Indigenous Human Rights Advocate and Lawyer Michelle Cook is a founder of Indigenous Women’s Divestment Delegations to Europe and a founding member of the Water Protector Legal Collective. Both groups were born from the global NoDAPL resistance movement at Standing Rock, North Dakota.
Michelle L. Cook is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation and born of the Honághááhnii (One Who Walks Around You) clan. She is a Commissioner on the Navajo Human Rights Commission established to collect data regarding discriminatory acts against citizens of the Navajo Nation.
She discussed the importance of sending delegations of indigenous women to speak with international financiers to let them know about the environmental and economic effects of their investments and to encourage their divestment from what they say are harmful projects.
The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2018 report indicates that there are just twelve years left to keep global warming at a maximum of 1.5c (above pre-industrial levels) or there will be far greater risks of extreme heat, extreme cold, droughts, flooding which could affect health, livelihoods, food security, and water supply.
Michelle Cook invites us all to not only divest from harmful economic and environmental practices but also to imagine a future free from fossil fuel dependence and to invest in that future. At a time when people are divided, water can be a cause to unify us all.
Recorded and produced by Amanda Shauger for 30 Minutes on 91.3 KXCI Tucson.