Another Major Demonstration Against Police Brutality & Racism Is Planned For Montreal

The demonstration will take place June 7.
Staff Writer
Another Major Demonstration Against Police Brutality & Racism Is Planned For Montreal

Montrealers will once again take to the streets to demand justice. Another protest against police brutality and racism is planned for downtown Montreal. The event is hosted by six local organizations: Nous sommes la ligue des noirs nouvelle génération, Black Rose Alliance, Fondation Busta John, EBF Élegance Beauté Fierté, Affirmation de la Femme Afro/ Afimasyon Fanm Afro, and EvoluJeunes 19-30 ans.

The demonstration will take place on Sunday, June 7, between Sunday 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. at Place Emilie-Gamelin.

It follows a demonstration on May 31 that organizers say drew 15,000 people. 

It was a solemn few hours in Montreal on Sunday. Standing in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and for all victims of police violence, protestors gathered in front of SPVM police headquarters. 

The peaceful protest reportedly ended when police used tear gas to disperse crowds in response to what the SPVM called "illegal behaviours" and "infractions" on Twitter.

There were reports of property damage and looting.

The SPVM said Monday that it has made 11 arrests and was investigating further incidents of mischief.

The Black Coalition of Quebec says that "police brutality hurts and kills every year around the world. Montreal is not an exception."

"The Black Coalition of Quebec has had to recently take the city of Montreal to Court because of discriminations perpetrated by police officers. We all wish for the family of George Floyd to be able to find peace and justice in these hard times."

For those that go protest, organizers suggest social distancing as much as possible, wearing a mask, and bringing hand sanitizer. 

Organizers for Sunday's protest said that "as we denounce recent police killings in the USA, we also denounce police killings of Black Lives here in Montreal, from Anthony Griffin in NDG in 1987 to BonyJean-Pierre in Montréal-Nord (2016), Pierre Coriolan in Centre-Sud (2017) and Nicholas Gibbs in NDG (2018)." 

An independent report from last year showed evidence that the SPVM is guilty of "systemic racial bias," where visible minorities are two to five times likely to get stopped. 

The report found that stops by police increased by 143% from 2014 to 2017 all while actual crime rates from the same time remained relatively stable

Indigenous women are one of the most targeted groups. They were stopped 11 times more often than white women.

Arab people, black people, and Indigenous people are between two and five times more likely to be stopped by the police in Montreal. 

The report stated that "at the SPVM in 2018, 8.2% of the workforce consisted of members belonging to a visible minority (7.7%) or an Aboriginal community (0.5%)," while "these two categories account for 32.8% of Montreal's population."

François Legault claimed on Monday that "there's no systemic discrimination" in Quebec.

The protest will take place on Sunday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. at Place Emilie-Gamelin.

Teddy Elliot
Staff Writer
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