Site C protester taken to hospital 19 days into hunger strike in Vancouver
by Travis Lupick, The Georgia Straight, April 1, 2016
ince March 13, Kristin Henry, 24, has camped outside the BC Hydro building at 333 Dunsmuir Street.
Last night (March 31), she was transported to St. Paul’s Hospital after “her heart rate dropped to concerning levels”, according to a Facebook page created for the protest.
“Prayers going out to Hunger Striker-Kristin Henry (Ghandi of 2016) for wellness. She went to St Paul hospital last night via Ambulance,” a message posted there reads. “Her determination of halting Site C will not go unnoticed.”
A related website explains the protesters have written an open letter to the prime minister that asks Ottawa to intervene and halt construction of the dam.
“This is a hunger strike calling on Justin Trudeau to immediately halt construction on the Site C dam and engage in proper consultation with the Treaty 8 First Nations,” it reads. “Kristin Henry is now on Day 19 of her strike outside the BC Hydro buildings in downtown Vancouver, and has been joined by other strikers including farmer Sage Birley. The strikers are putting their health and lives at risk to stop this project.”
Several First Nations groups have voiced opposition to the Site C project. They have expressed concerns that the dam will result in flooding a vast area, destroying a region of historical and cultural significance.
The provincial government approved the Site C dam for construction in December 2014. The megaproject is estimated to cost $8.8 billion. It will be built on a section of the Peace River roughly seven kilometres southwest of Fort St. John.
BC Hydro maintains the Site C dam is required to provide clean energy to British Columbia. A December 2015 media release claims the crown corporation is “committed to meeting its obligation to consult and accommodate Aboriginal groups”.