Occupy INAC Day 3 Media Roundup
TORONTO – An occupation by a group of Indigenous activists and their allies continues into its third day in the occupied offices of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) at 25 St. Clair in Toronto. The group began the action on Wednesday March 13th, as a group made up Indigenous and Black Lives Matter activists took the INAC office in Toronto and demanded that the Canadian Government take urgent action in wake of a string of youth suicides in Indigenous nations.
The INAC office in Winnipeg was occupied on Thursday, March 14th and there are unconfirmed reports that another INAC office on James Bay is also being occupied. Over 50 people gathered in Ottawa to take over the INAC offices in Gatineau, only to find the office doors locked. Activists have attempted to organize other occupations at INAC offices across Canada today, only to find that the Federal Government has shuttered their offices in order to forestall further direct actions.
On Friday afternoon, Real Peoples Media conducted an interview with Mohawk woman Carrie Lester about the current conditions in the Toronto INAC office.
The demands from the initial occupation in Toronto were that Prime Minister Trudeau make an immediate visit to the Attawapiskat community and that he meet the list of demands made by the children of Attawapiskat. However, as support has been growing from across Turtle Island, a more thorough list of demands that addresses the root causes of the Indigenous suicide epidemic have been elaborated by the occupiers of INAC in Winnipeg.
Kanenhariyo, a Mohawk man from Tyendinaga offered the following analysis of the current political moment and the implications of getting rid of the Indian Act.
The occupation continues to be livestreamed by @deeshanger on Ustream. Ricochet Media has a video journalist inside the Toronto occupation and have been producing a series of excellent video reports detailing the unfolding of events. You can follow the Toronto INAC occupation on Twitter and on Facebook. and is updated. Toronto photographer John Bonnar has made available a collection of photos of protest outside the Toronto INAC offices on Thursday.
Hashtags being used on social media for the event include #GroundZeroINAC and #OccupyINAC.
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