After being served an eviction notice to vacate the grounds across from the Legislative Building by Tuesday afternoon, an Indigenous justice rights protest camp was still there Wednesday morning.
The Provincial Capital Commission posted a notice on a tree near the camp advising that it does not consent to the erection of tents and structures, overnight camping and the burning of wood.
The advisory asks the occupants to discontinue these activities and remove their property.
Failure to do so will be acted upon accordingly.
A spokesperson for the protesters, Richelle Dubois, says this is the second eviction notice the group has received but they have no plans to leave.
“This is my second notice,” she says. “They [Provincial Capital Commission] didn’t come down the first time they gave me the notice. The time passed, the first time we set up camp. We’ll see what happens.”
The camp originally started in the winter, following the not guilty verdicts in the murder trials of Colten Boushie and Tina Fontaine.
The protesters are advocating for societal change in attitudes towards Canada’s Indigenous population.
Dubois says the group met briefly with an official from the Central Services Ministry but that further and more in-depth discussions were not conducted.
She says she finds it disheartening the protesters are getting evicted during National Indigenous History Month.
“I think that it goes to show for 150 years they’ve been suppressing us, and they’re still suppressing us,”
A statement from the Provincial Capital Commission reads: “The Government of Saskatchewan has attempted to arrange several meetings with the leadership at the camp. Recently, a meeting was planned for Tuesday, May 29 with the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Social Services, the Minister of Central Services and the Minister of Government Relations and was to include a smudging ceremony, conversation and lunch in the Legislature and was agreed to by the group. However, the night before this meeting, we were informed members of the group would no longer be attending this meeting inside the Legislature. Alternative dates were proposed, but no agreement was reached. The Ministry of Central Services will assess the next steps with the Ministry of Justice and the Regina Police Service, but we do expect to enforce the notice.”
(Photo: Eviction order by the Provincial Capital Commission, by Dan Jones)