“The Indigenous Women’s Divestment Delegation: Experiences from Standing Rock” provides a rare platform to bring indigenous women who witnessed and were harmed by human rights abuses at Standing Rock, North Dakota to meet directly with bank and financial institution representatives across Europe to ask them to divest from the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and exclude harmful extractive industries from their investment portfolios. The delegation offers indigenous women the opportunity to meet face-to-face with the representatives of financial institutions whose decisions and choices directly impact their bodies, lives, rights, and futures. This program asks banks to discontinue investments and loan disbursements to companies behind controversial fossil fuel projects like the DAPL in consultation with Native leaders until the resolution of outstanding issues and the enactment of free, prior, and informed consent by indigenous peoples is obtained. The platform creates space for indigenous women to be central actors in shaping global economic justice and change by educating banks and civil society on how their investments impact the human rights of indigenous women; making divestment from harmful industries imperative and investments in sustainable alternatives necessary for just economic transitions.
Michelle L. Cook is Honagháahnii (One Who Walks Around You) Clan and Tábąąhá (Close to the Water Edge) Clan is an enrolled member of the Diné (Navajo) Nation. She recently served as a Commissioner on the Navajo Human Rights Commission and received her Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from the University of New Mexico School of Law with a certificate in Federal Indian law. She is a Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) Candidate at the University of Arizona’s Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program. She is a founding member of the Water Protector Legal Collective (WPLC) the on the ground legal team formed to protect indigenous peoples human rights in the Standing Rock encampments. She is also the founder of the Divest, Invest, Protect and co-director of the Indigenous Women’s Divestment Delegations an indigenous-led international human rights campaign pressuring banks, insurance, and credit rating agencies to divest from harmful extraction companies and projects and invest in the survival and self-determination of the world’s indigenous peoples. She is currently developing and directing the Indigenous Human Rights Defenders and Corporate Accountability Program at the University of Arizona School of Law.
Monday, March 2, 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm, Haybarn Theatre
Free and open to the public.
Sponsored by the Undergraduate Studies Program.