A demonstration to honour the life of George Floyd and confront police racism will take place in Montreal today and will be held at the Montreal Police Headquarters at 1441 Saint Urbain Street.
The event, entitled “Montreal Solidarity Demonstration,” is motivated by the desire to bring about justice not only for Floyd, but for Regis Korchinski-Paquet of Toronto, Tony McDade of Tallahassee, Florida, Breonna Taylor of Louisville, Kentucky, and all other victims of police brutality.
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“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).” The event’s Facebook page explains.
“The inspiring resistance to racist police violence in the United States demands our solidarity and support, even during the pandemic.”
The demonstration is hosted by three separate organizations that advocate for anti-police brutality and anti-racist causes in Montreal, Justice for Victims of Police Killings, non-profit organization Hoodstock, and media company Tout Le Hood en Parle.
Organizers are encouraging anyone that is able to attend to do so “in large numbers” to “declare together #BlackLivesMatter and to denounce police violence and impunity against everyone.”
Prior to the protest, there will be a “Holding Space for Black Life” event that is exclusively reserved for black individuals.
“We need this time to be among ourselves to grieve, share & to hold one another,” the event’s page explains. “Please respect our space.”
Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) issued a series of tweets on Sunday denouncing the unfortunate events that took place in Minneapolis, stating their support and accompaniment for the peaceful demonstration taking place today.
“We respect the rights and the need of everyone to speak out against this violence and will be by your side to ensure your safety,” SPVM explained.
Soyez assurés de notre soutien et de notre accompagnement pour la manifestation pacifique tenue à Mtl en appui à toute la communauté. Nous respectons les droits et le besoin de chacun de dénoncer haut et fort cette violence et serons à vos côtés pour assurer votre sécurité.(2/2)
— Police Montréal (@SPVM) May 31, 2020
However, since there is still a risk of transmission due to the COVID-19 pandemic, event organizers do urge those participating to practice caution by maintaining proper physical distancing and wearing masks.
The page describes how the event’s location was specifically chosen where it can “take up a lot of space.” Additionally, there will be extra masks on hand for those who forget or are unable to bring one.
The Montreal Solidarity Demonstration is set to take place today, Sunday, May 31, from 5 pm to 6:30 pm.