Calina Lawrence, Shailene Woodley, Joey Montoya, and Kendrick Sampson
Published July 24, 2016
PHILADELPHIA – The Urban Native Era media team, directed by Joey Montoya (Lipan Apache), Native American college students, and a group of celebrity activists formed a six-vehicle caravan journey in order to attend the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, and join the “It’s Up To Us” Movement.
The caravans have left from Portland, Oregon and Los Angeles, California and followed a southern route as well as a northern route. The caravans began on July 17 and reached Philadelphia on Saturday, July 23.
Organizers include Calina Lawrence (Suquamish, Port Gamble, S’klallam, Puyallup, Yakama), Shailene Woodley (Divergent Series actress), Kendrick Sampson (Vampire Diaries), Rosario Dawson (Seven Pounds) and several others throughout the country.
“The intention of this journey to the DNC is because Native peoples are always ‘the last thought’ in politics in this country. Bernie Sanders gave voice to Native people and issues that no other presidential nominee has ever done. The Up To Us Movement plans to continue fighting for an end to environmental degradation, fracking, the Koch brothers and big oil, treaty rights, and historic genocide, by including everyone who is willing to join the conversation,” commented Monotoya on Sunday night from Philadelphia.
“In order to make a movement move, we must stay activated, engaged, and unified. Our goal for this movement is to transcend our upcoming presidential election and to show that “enough is enough!,” said Woodley.
Signs that the people in Athens Country Ohio, felt about the fracking, toxic oil dumping going on there. Residents were in support of Native issues with oil, and the environment.
The “It’s Up To Us” Movement followed a conversation between Kendrick, Shailene and Rosario after speaking with Native youth in May. Native youth were concerned with biased misrepresentation in the media, mental health issues, and overall dissatisfaction with indigenous communities and the federal government.
Up to Us group at Franklin Park, Philadelphia.
“The Caravan is about gathering the Nations, our youth, and anyone else interested so that we can continue to tackle these issues on a new level. Our ancestors did it before, and we as youth can learn from them and continue to peacefully fight current issues our communities are facing,” said Montoya.
“This caravan is a new ‘Peace Train’ that is encouraging Native youth via social media and in person to meet with members of the caravan and tell their own stories along the route,” Montoya continued.