Derek Sherrange is a junior majoring in Global Studies and International Economics-Multilanguage (Spanish and Swahili). Their research interests are in food sovereignty, decolonial studies, human rights policy, and socio-legal studies. Derek is critical of the lack of recognition by settler-states of the traditional territory of Indigenous peoples that they reside on today. More specifically, they want to acknowledge the traditional territory of the Haudenosaunee people that their home and their educational institution sits on.
This case study provides a specific overview of the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe’s lawsuit against the chemical production giant Monsanto (now Bayer). The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe is located in Akwesasne at the crossroads between the borders of the settler provinces of Ontario and Quebec and the settler state of New York. They have endured the effects of Monsanto’s production of Polychlorinated Biphenyls and the fact that they became a pollutant in the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribes' main water source, the St. Lawrence River Watershed. This case reveals several important factors in relation to the socio-legal dimensions of food sovereignty and their role in maintaining the power of the settler-state. Using this case, these factors will be analyzed, concluding with a discussion as to ways in which settler-law can integrate Indigenous ways of knowing to better provide for the rights of all people to a just legal system and a sovereign food system.