Why healing is at the centre of Indigenous Climate Action’s work

The healing justice framework offers organizations, allies and the climate movement a way to protect the well-being of the planet and those advocating for its survival.

Why It Matters

At the roots of the climate crisis are systems of oppression, which perpetuate harm mentally, physically and emotionally. Rest is just as important a response to the climate crisis as organizing — the two go hand in hand. Healing justice could be a way to sustain the climate movement.

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Melina Laboucon-Massimo, a leading Lubicon-Cree climate justice advocate and co-founder of Indigenous Climate Action (ICA), has organized for over a decade in response to the harmful impacts of extractive industries on the environment. Her community in Northern Alberta, Canada is on the frontlines of the tar sands, the largest site of oil extraction in the world.

Because of the violence and trauma these industries can have on communities, along with stress of frontline organizing, Laboucon-Massimo was forced to bed rest for months in 2019 to address her health problems that had built up over time.

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