Albuquerque, N.M. – The Democratic Party of New Mexico, in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and tribes throughout New Mexico, made the decision to divest from Wells Fargo, one of the many financial institutions supporting the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Chairwoman Haaland, the first Native American state party chair in the country, said, “The Democratic Party of New Mexico knows that it’s imperative tribes have a seat at the table and that their voices are respected. Donald Trump’s action to continue the Dakota Access Pipeline is a direct assault on meaningful tribal consultation, and now we must make sure our support is not only heard but felt. We are closing our accounts at Wells Fargo, and we encourage others who feel compelled by this issue to do the same.”
“As Native Americans and as Democrats, it is incumbent upon us to stand up when we see injustice,” said Marisa Romero of the Pawnee Nation and Chair of DPNM’s Native American Caucus. “I support the DPNM leadership in this decision to close all accounts with Wells Fargo, in hopes they take notice that we are not blind to the institution’s vested interest with the Dakota Access Pipeline. We will not stand idly by while they fund the desecration of the Dakota peoples’ land and water.”
Wells Fargo is one of several banks funding the pipeline either through direct loans or investment in Energy Transfer Partners, the parent company of pipeline’s developer, Dakota Access, LLC.
This step is just one in a long line of consistent opposition the Party has shown on the grounds of the federal governments’ legal obligation to consult tribes and the impact to the valuable water resources for communities along the pipeline.
In September, the Democratic Party of New Mexico’s Native American Democratic Caucus wrote a letter to Chairman Dave Archambault expressing support for the tribe’s stance and Chairwoman Haaland traveled to North Dakota in solidarity with New Mexico tribes, who supports Standing Rock. During her time in North Dakota, she volunteered at the Standing Rock Tribal Services building, met with tribal leaders, and helped at the Oceti Sakowin camp where the community set up in protest of the pipeline project.
At the DPNM State Central Committee meeting in late October, the committee took a stand to support the efforts of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe to protect their water resources and sacred sites and to ensure tribal consultation is a priority by unanimously voting to send a letter of commitment to Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault.