|Aerial view of Oceti Sakowin Camp today during snow, on Treaty land.|
Chairman calls on Army Corps to reaffirm their position of no forcible removal
CANNON BALL, North Dakota —The following statement from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s Chairman, Dave Archambault II, can be quoted in part or in full.
French translation by Christine Prathttp://www.chrisp.lautre.net/wpblog/?p=3861
Dutch translation by Alice Holemans
“Today, Gov. Dalrymple issued an executive order calling for mandatory evacuation of all campers located on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) lands, also known as the Oceti Sakowin camp. This state executive order is a menacing action meant to cause fear, and is a blatant attempt by the state and local officials to usurp and circumvent federal authority. The USACE has clearly stated that it does not intend to forcibly remove campers from federal property. The Governor cites harsh weather conditions and the threat to human life. As I have stated previously, the most dangerous thing we can do is force well-situated campers from their shelters and into the cold. If the true concern is for public safety than the Governor should clear the blockade and the county law enforcement should cease all use of flash grenades, high-pressure water cannons in freezing temperatures, dog kennels for temporary human jails, and any harmful weaponry against human beings. This is a clear stretch of state emergency management authority and a further attempt to abuse and humiliate the water protectors. The State has since clarified that they won’t be deploying law enforcement to forcibly remove campers, but we are wary that this executive order will enable further human rights violations.”
Dalrymple Orders Emergency Evacuation To Safeguard Against Harsh Winter Conditions
Signed November 28, 2016
WHEREAS, Morton County is currently experiencing severe winter weather storm conditions, and it is anticipated harsh winter conditions will continue until next spring; and
WHEREAS, winter conditions have the potential to endanger human life, especially when they are exposed to these conditions without proper shelter, dwellings, or sanitation for prolonged periods of time; and
WHEREAS, large populations have chosen to stay in areas of Morton County managed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers south of the Cantapeta Creek and the Cannonball River (The areas include the confluence with Cantapeta Creek east, east of North Dakota Highway 1806, north of the Cannonball River, and west of the Missouri River) in tents, vehicles, temporary and semi-permanent structures which have not been inspected and approved by Morton County as proper dwellings suitable for winter habitation; and
WHEREAS, the aforementioned areas of Morton County are not zoned for dwellings suitable for living in winter conditions, and also do not possess proper permanent sanitation infrastructure to sustain a living environment consistent with proper public health; and
WHEREAS, the United States Army Corps of Engineers has ordered the aforementioned area of Morton County which they manage to be vacated due to public safety concerns related to the inability to effectively provide emergency, medical, fire response services, and law enforcement services; and
WHEREAS, it is the responsibility of the state to assist citizens and visitors to North Dakota in addressing the emergencies, disasters, and other hardships that may face the state, its citizens and visitors, to include issuance of orders in the best interest of public safety.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Jack Dalrymple, Governor of the State of North Dakota, order a mandatory evacuation of all persons located in areas under the proprietary jurisdiction of the United States Army Corps of Engineers located in Morton County, and defined as a prohibited area in Exhibit A of the United States Army Corps of Engineers memorandum provided to the Morton County Sheriff on November 25th, 2016 and attached to this order. This definition of the evacuation area shall remain in effect even if the United States Army Corps of Engineers redefines or removes these prohibited areas. These persons are ordered to leave the evacuation area immediately, and are further ordered not to return to the evacuation area.
All persons in the evacuation area shall take all their possessions with them upon their evacuation.
Any action or inaction taken by any party which encourages persons to enter, reenter, or remain in the evacuation area will be subject to penalties as defined in law.
I direct state agencies, emergency service officials, and nongovernmental organizations to reduce threats to public safety by not guaranteeing the provision of emergency and other governmental and nongovernmental services in the evacuation area, unless otherwise approved on a case by case basis by the Morton County Sheriff or Superintendent of the Highway Patrol. The general public is hereby notified that emergency services probably will not be available under current winter conditions.
Any person who chooses to enter, reenter, or stay in the evacuation does so at their own risk, and assumes any and all corresponding liabilities for their unlawful presence and occupation of the evacuation area.
This order is issued pursuant to the following authority and for the following reasons:
The Governor is vested with the executive authority pursuant to Article V, Section 1 of the North Dakota Constitution; and,
The governor is vested with statutory authority to issue executive orders to minimize or avert the effects of a disaster or emergency pursuant to Chapter 37-17.1 of the North Dakota Century Code; and,
The governor is vested by Section 37-17.1-05(6)(e), N.D.C.C. with authority to direct and compel the evacuation of all or part of the population from any stricken or threatened area within the state if the governor deems this action necessary for the preservation of life or other disaster or emergency mitigation, response, or recovery; and
A coordinated and effective effort of all state departments is required to minimize the impact of disasters and emergencies in this state.
This order is effective immediately, and it shall remain in effect until rescinded. Executed at Bismarck, North Dakota, this 28th day of November, 2016.
Signed Executive Order: application/pdf iconExecutive Order 2016-08.pdf