To the səlil̓wətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations, the general public, the City of Vancouver, and the police:
Extinction Rebellion is a peaceful global movement that uses nonviolent direct action to demand meaningful action on the climate and ecological emergency. Acts of civil disobedience persist as part of the ongoing International Rebellion, which aims to bring attention to the idle nature of world leaders in addressing the climate and ecological emergency. Here in Vancouver, local rebels are rising up in preparation for the Spring Rebellion beginning on May 1st, 2021. A series of actions leading up to the Spring Rebellion are underway to make our demands clear to governing bodies. The second of these preliminary actions, The 4 Demands March, will be held on February 27th, 2021. On this day at 12:00pm, we plan to take over the streets. We are rising up to let our elected leaders know we will continue the rebellion — here, throughout Canada, and across the world — until our four core demands are met:
0 - A JUST TRANSFORMATION
Government must respond to the climate and ecological crises with a just transformation that is actively decolonial, prioritizing the livelihoods of workers and the rights of those most oppressed by the present system — including our non-human relations.
1 - TELL THE TRUTH
Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
2 – ACT NOW
Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
3 – BEYOND POLITICS
Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.
To our Host Nations
We gratefully acknowledge that we are gathering on the traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish Peoples. With respect to the səlil̓wətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) First Nations, we recognize our responsibilities to step up in support of your leadership as protectors of the land and water. We recognize the right of all Indigenous Peoples to free, prior, and informed consent, and to refuse development projects on their lands, such as the TMX Pipeline. Canada has not reconciled its colonial laws with Indigenous laws, or the basic right of self-determination that would allow Indigenous Nations to protect their lands. We stand in solidarity with Indigenous land defenders throughout the province. We acknowledge that Indigenous communities have been on the frontlines of this struggle for generations; Extinction Rebellion is very late to the fight. We hope to learn from you and your knowledge that has been acquired over millennia of acting as good relatives. We want to support you and stand with you in the fight for Indigenous sovereignty and self-determination, and to help protect your beautiful lands. Hay chxw q’a.
To the general public
We do not want to be causing disruption to people going about their everyday lives, but we have no other choice. The Canadian government is failing to act on the climate crisis and to protect its citizens. We have no political affiliation; we are everyday people just like you. We are uniting behind science and Indigenous knowledge to avert catastrophic climate and ecological breakdown, as well as societal collapse. Worldwide, hundreds of thousands of people are already being affected by famine, droughts, rising sea levels, flash floods, and increasingly frequent extreme weather events. And in our own backyard, Indigenous peoples have already been feeling the effects of climate change for years, particularly in the Arctic. Other vulnerable populations, including but not limited to people of colour, refugees, those with chronic illnesses, and those suffering from poverty, food insecurity, and inadequate housing, will be hit especially hard in this time of social and ecological crisis. We are not exempt from this emergency here in Vancouver. It is only a short matter of time until we see more of these dramatic changes here at home. Historical analyses have shown that the most effective way to create change is to mobilize the public to take part in mass nonviolent direct action. We can no longer follow a political system that is knowingly marching us towards extinction. We believe it is our civic duty to rebel. We ask you to gather with us at the Vancouver Art Gallery on Saturday, February 27th at 12:00 pm to rebel, for our children, our futures, and life itself.
To the City of Vancouver
We are writing to inform you of our plan to peacefully demonstrate in the interest of the long-term health and well-being of all residents of this great city. To continue with business and politics as usual is to jeopardize the future generations of all life on Earth. For this reason we will be taking over the streets of downtown Vancouver on February 27th. Our goal is to force the government to implement the changes needed to avert further climate and ecological disaster. Services such as public transit, ambulances, and the fire department will need to plan accordingly. This inconvenience is small compared to the irreversible and catastrophic damage to the planet that scientists agree will continue into the future unless we make drastic changes to our way of life and to our relationship with our land, air, and water.
To the police
We are Extinction Rebellion. We are a nonviolent, peaceful, and disciplined movement. You can rely on us to keep our actions nonviolent on February 27th and beyond. If someone is breaking the law, we understand that you may choose to arrest them and we will not resist arrest.
In solidarity, Extinction Rebellion Vancouver