APTN National News
Demonstrators held a protest outside a TD Bank in Montreal for its support of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).
The 1,800 kilometre long pipeline project passes through sacred lands and waterways of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe who oppose the development.
“There’s actually been a global call for solidarity action (with Standing Rock), especially regarding banks,” said organizer Kristen Perry of Climate Justice Montreal.
The group is targeting the TD bank for good reason.
“In Canada, TD is actually the biggest funder of the Dakota Access Pipeline. And they have this big green brand where they’re saying, ‘we’re doing all these green things and we’re planting trees,’ and then they go around and fund pipelines,” said Perry.
The protestors presented TD with petitions that they say have been signed by hundreds of thousands of people from around the world.
Others, like Jennifer Jarome of the Gesgapegiag Mi’gmaq First Nation, are using further methods to hit the bank where it hurts.
“It’s been about a month now that I’ve been in the process of going to another bank,” said Jarome.
TD Bank said it has heard the concerns of protestors and clients loud and clear.
In a December news release it said the bank hired an independent human rights expert to “conduct a review on behalf of the lenders and advise on recommended improvements [DAPL builder] ETP and Sunoco Logistics can make to their social policies and procedures moving forward.”
But that’s not good enough for Jerome who is determined to take her business elsewhere unless TD pulls funding from the pipeline.
She said anything less would go against Standing Rock.
“I have some close friends in Standing Rock right now and I just want to give a huge shout out to them and let them know that I’m here in Montreal with them a hundred percent.”