Hochelaga Community Members March Against the Climate Crisis

A group of Hochelaga Citizens Bang on Pots and Pans to Protest Climate Change

Protesters local to Hochelaga bang their casseroles as they march down the street. Photo Olivia Piché

In the wake of the monumental climate strike on Sept. 27, smaller demonstrations have been trying to keep the momentum going.

Les mardis casseroles in Hochelaga is an example of a smaller demonstration which is a part of the larger coalition La planète s’invite au Parlement.

With this groups first march having taken place on Oct.15, around 20 residents of Hochelaga gathered for a second time on Ontario St. on Tuesday for Les mardis casseroles pour la planète. These demonstrations will continue every Tuesday until Dec. 17.

The protestors are demanding “the government take direct action to stop the climate crisis and to become carbon-neutral,” says Zoe Tremblay Cosette, the organizer of Les mardis casseroles in Hochelaga.

Cossette says she got inspiration from a similar demonstration that had taken place at Laurier Metro station and wanted to bring this initiative to her neighborhood.

Zoé Tremblay Cosette, organizer of the demonstration, proudly leads protesters to Pie-IX Blvd. Photo Olivia Piché

The protesters walked from Place Gennevilliers Laliberté to Pie-IX Blvd. banging on pots and pans. People of all ages were present, from infants to retirees.

The pots and pans are used to amplify unrest, like how the mothers and grandmothers in Argentina did to protest the hunger and economic injustices in their country, according to the group’s Facebook page.

While Cosette acknowledged the inspiration came from the Argentinian women, she said this symbol is also present in Quebec’s history. She brought up the Maple Spring student protests that took place in Quebec in 2012, which also used the noise of pots and pans to register unrest.

It’s important to me that my child’s future is okay. — Camille Perreult

One of Hochelaga’s youngest protesters, Lylou Sehili, a student at Collège de Maisonneuve, said “These [smaller] protests are different, but just as important for the longevity and maintenance of the movement.”

Sehili said the reason she attended this protest was because it makes “mobilization more accessible for everyone.” She believes in the strength of solidarity that is created when community members come together for a shared cause.

Contrary to the climate strike in September and its mass of students, the Hochelaga demonstration was mostly mothers and grandmothers, their kids and grandkids in tow.

Martine Leclercq, one of these eldest protesters says “It’s really time to bring back out our casseroles like we have done a long time ago,” referring to protests she had previously taken apart of.

Camille Perreult, one of the mothers present said she was protesting because of her child. “It’s important to me that my child’s future is okay,” she said.

She also said she wants to have something to tell her child in 50 years when they ask what she did about the climate crisis.

While they all protested for different reasons, one thing is clear and is mentioned on their Facebook page: they “took out [their] casseroles and will not put them away until there is victory.”