Unanimous vote from Winnipeg council to start injunction in ongoing protest

By Alex Karpa

Winnipeg City Council unanimously voted in favour of a new motion regarding the ongoing protests at the Manitoba Legislature.

Michael Jack, the city’s chief administrative officer has been called on to investigate an injunction and look in to raising fines for both blocking emergency vehicles and making constant noise.

“Right now, we all want to see calm,” stated Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman. “I would just once again call on those that are currently occupying our streets, to please leave.”

Protesters outside the Manitoba Legislature, calling on the Manitoba government to remove COVID-19 mandates. (Photo: CityNews staff).

Protests have lasted a week in Winnipeg, with dozens of trucks blocking accessways around Broadway and Memorial.

Demonstrators in the city and across the country have been opposing the current COVID-19 mandates and restrictions that are in place. Mayor Bowman and other councillors have referred to the protests as “an occupation.”

“Winnipeggers have seen temporary disruptions because of protests in the past, but what is unique in this case is the multi-day occupation of public streets and the noise that has come with it.”

A few of the councillors originally objected to the motion put forward by Bowman, with Transcona Councillor Shawn Nason calling it “a puff piece.” But after hours of deliberation, Bowman amended his motion, which included the idea of the court injunction.


This ultimately changed the minds of those who opposed, including Nason – who feels for the residents living near the downtown area.

“There are vehicles blocking sightlines of two lanes of traffic, with pedestrians encroaching immediately on the lane of traffic, trying to high-wave, wave their banners. There are people handing out material. I have observed that directly,” said Nason.

Councillor Sherri Rollins, who represents Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry, the area directly affected by the protest, says the protest has become overwhelming for her constituents.

“I have heard of stories from families with young children who are being woken through the night and are being sent to schools tired and upset,” explained Rollins. “I have heard stories from healthcare professionals who work through the night, and then come home and have unacceptable noise pollution all day so they cannot rest for their next shift.”

Rollins says she also wants the Winnipeg police board and city to review police communications during a protest. Bowman says he has been in contact with both Premier Heather Stefanson and Justice Minister Kelvin Goertzen about the ongoing demonstrations.

Stefanson addressed the motion Thursday saying “I welcome the opportunity to meet with the mayor and discuss further the ongoing protests. Maintaining constant communications between levels of government is imperative.”

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