Stepping up to the mic

The No Tankers network just helped sign up the largest group of people ever in Canadian history to speak at a pipeline hearing.

Over the course of about 30 days, over 4,000 people registered to make oral statements to the Enbridge Joint Review Panel. Our ‘Mob the Mic’ action accounted for about 1,600 of those! Some people signed up as individuals, others joined one of Mob the Mic’s 150 teams.

I caught up with two Mob the Mic team captains to find out why they got involved.

Garry Fletcher, a marine scientist who has spent the last 35 years educating people about the Race Rocks Ecological Reserve off the coast of Victoria, started Team Race Rocks.

Jack Thornburgh, a municipal council candidate for North Saanich and member of a local eco-group, started team Jack Thornburgh.

Eric: Why did you feel Mob the Mic was a worthwhile action to get involved in?

Jack:  “It sort of magnifies and multiples our effectiveness, if you get people involved in a team you start with two people, then those two get three or four more, then those people will talk to somebody else, so I thought that was a good thing.”

Eric: What did you do to get your personal network to sign up?

Garry: “Those I contacted are aware of the commitment I have had through the years to Race Rocks and the distance education work of the Race Rocks website.  I appreciate their recognition of this and their agreement to make a personal statement on the importance of this matter to all of us of this.”

Jack: “I talked it up in our eco-cell group out here. Our core group is about 8 or 9 people and 2 of the people there talked to their friends and that’s how that got started.”

Eric: Eco-cell eh? That’s cool. When did that get started?

Jack: “It was started three years ago when one of the folks got back from this Al Gore training in Tennessee. He came back and gave a public meeting at our church, and out of that grew our eco-cell because everyone was feeling global warming was the thing around which we could coalesce, and the rest is history.”

PLANNING TO MAKE YOUR ORAL STATEMENTS

The Joint Review Panel hasn’t decided where the hearings will be, or when, so it makes it hard to plan too far in advance. Patience is the key.

Dogwood will be hosting a webinar or two sometime this fall to answer questions and make some suggestions about how to prepare for your oral statements. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, for everyone on a team, we suggest thinking about team T-shirts.

Like a giant laser robot cat!

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