In 2014, protests and occupation of Manitoba’s Jenpeg Dam on Pimicikamak territory by Pimicikamak people changed the relationship between Manitoba Hydro and this First Nations tribe.
The construction of the Jenpeg Dam and the monetization of the Nelson River violated Pimicikamak sovereignty and threatened thousand-year-old food webs. As Noretta Miswaggon, a Cree teacher and communications officer for Pimicikamak Okimawin, the nation’s self-government stated, “When Hydro built the dam, it severed our connection to the land.” The 2014 occupation of the Jenpeg Generating Station transformed the Pimicikamak’s relationship with Manitoba Hydro.
This occupation significantly changed the dynamic between Manitoba Hydro and the Pimicikamak people and showed Manitoba Hydro that First Nations people can kick them out anytime they want. Not only have these actions brought an official apology from Manitoba Hydro and the provincial government, but they have also spurred the crown corporation to fund millions of dollars of community programs for the Pimicikamak.
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