Anti-Police Protesters Can’t Quell Irish Festivities

  • Riot Police handling a small group of protesters around the Guy-Concordia Metro Sunday during St. Paddy’s Day festivities. Photo Shaun Michaud

The Collectif Opposé à la Brutalité Policière held a protest on the corner of de Maisonneuve Blvd. and Guy St. on Sunday afternoon.

The tiny corner outside of the Guy-Concordia metro station was swarmed by media and police at 1:30 p.m., the announced time of the protest, but the only sounds that could be heard were cheers and music from the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade marching a block away along Ste. Catherine St.

By 1:40, a few protesters had shuffled out into the cold and started chanting slogans defending their right to demonstrate in the face of such overwhelming opposition.

A few minutes later, the crowd of protesters increased to about 30 people, whom the officers spoke with and explained that the gathering was illegal and not to interfere with the parade.

As the small group confronted the police and held their ground, the group was quickly encircled by police in riot gear.

“We decided to organize a protest just for the right to protest,” said Jennifer Bobette, one of the protest organizers.

“It was not in our plans to go and disrupt the parade so what we’re seeing now is not a lot of people and a lot of cops.”

The entire event lasted 15 minutes, and the total number of protesters were almost outnumbered by the media alone.

With no intention of escalating the standoff from either side, the protest quickly fizzled out as both the protesters and the police dispersed.

Video by Shaun Michaud, Matthew Rose and Erik Trudel

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