le Jeudi 19 mai 2022
le Jeudi 18 juin 2020 2:09 | mis à jour le 8 avril 2022 19:22 Tribune-Express (Hawkesbury)

We Are One rally against racism

The message from the residents of Vankleek Hill. Racism is a crime and everyone needs to join the fight against it. The We Are One rally organized June 12 by four Vankleek Hill students saw dozens of people turn out for a peaceful march in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and other anti-racism protests around the world. — photo André Farhat
The message from the residents of Vankleek Hill. Racism is a crime and everyone needs to join the fight against it. The We Are One rally organized June 12 by four Vankleek Hill students saw dozens of people turn out for a peaceful march in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and other anti-racism protests around the world.
photo André Farhat
They all gathered in the streets of Vankleek Hill Friday afternoon to take a knee and show their support for the fight against racism everywhere.

Four Vankleek Hill students decided to organize a rally in their home town on June 12 to take part in the worldwide Black Lives Matter movement against racism and social injustice towards all ethnic groups. Anna and Amelia Kouao and Nora and Georgia Dawood weren’t sure what kind of response they would get to the social media postings for their We Are One rally June 12 in the mid-afternoon.

By three o’clock that day, the scheduled starting time for the rally, dozens of people, ranging in age from children to seniors, and including police, township council members, and others, gathered in front of the Vankleek Hill Creating Centre at the corner of Main Street and High Street. Almost everyone wore face masks and followed social distancing precautions as they marched up High Street as far as the Zudio studio and then back to the Creating Centre.

Upon their return to the starting point of the march, everyone observed a period of silence lasting eight minutes and 46 seconds in memory of George Floyd, a black man who lived in Minneapolis, and other victims of racism. The long period of silence represents the time span during which Floyd struggled for breath while he lay face down and handcuffed while Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer, held Floyd down with a knee on the back of his neck. Floyd died of suffocation. Chauvin now faces charges, as do the three other police officers who stood by and watched as he knelt on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes.

Lynda Kitchikeesic, a veteran activist for First Nations rights, joined the gathering as a guest speaker. She is involved in a variety of projects and programs aimed at improving communications and relations between police and Indigenous people and other groups.

The message from the residents of Vankleek Hill. Racism is a crime and everyone needs to join the fight against it. The We Are One rally organized June 12 by four Vankleek Hill students saw dozens of people turn out for a peaceful march in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and other anti-racism protests around the world.

photo André Farhat

Four Vankleek Hill students wanted to show their support for all of the anti-racism protests and projects around the world. So Anna and Amelia Kouao and Nora and Georgia Dawood organized the We Are One rally June 12 in their home town. The event saw dozens of people turn out for a peaceful march to show their support of the fight against racism.

photo André Farhat
photo André Farhat
photo André Farhat

Lynda Kitchikeesic, a veteran Canadian activist for First Nations right and also for better understanding, communication, and cooperation between Indigenous people and police forces, was a guest speaker at the We Are One rally in Vankleek Hill June 12. Four local students organized the event to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement and other anti-racism programs and projects around the world.

photo André Farhat

Everyone took a knee Friday afternoon during the We Are One rally in Vankleek Hill June 12 to honour the memory of George Floyd and other victims of racism. Four Vankleek Hill students organized the event to show support of the Black Lives Matter movement and other anti-racism protests around the world.

photo capture from We Are One Facebook page