MINNEAPOLIS — Two protesters using ropes and climbing harnesses dangled from a banner at the Bears-Vikings game at U.S. Bank Stadium Sunday. The banner featured a U.S. Bank logo and said “DIVEST #NoDAPL” in protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
In a statement e-mailed to the Star Tribune, Sen Holiday, one of the two people dangling from the banner, said: “We are here in solidarity with water protectors from Standing Rock to urge U.S. Bank to divest from the Dakota Access Pipeline.”
According to the statement, U.S. Bank has $175 million in credit lines to Energy Transfer Partners, a parent company of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
One of protesters wore a Vikings Brett Favre jersey. Seven rows of seats in the 100 level were evacuated below as a safety precaution.
“Two individuals appear to have climbed over a guard rail to access the ridge truss,” SMG, the company that manages U.S. Bank Stadium, said in a statement. “We immediately dispatched on-site Minneapolis police and fire departments to the scene and cleared the seating section below. We are working with all stadium partners, and our primary focus is on the safety of the fans and these two individuals. Officials are actively working to get them down safely. We will continue to update media on the situation.”
The protest began in the first half of the Bears’ 38-10 loss to the Vikings Sunday and the game continued without a delay. After the game, Bears head coach John Fox said he had “no clue” the protesters were dangling from the top of the stadium.
The two protesters hung from a support tress until the game concluded. At that point they surrendered to police and were arrested.