A group of about a dozen protesters marched up 50th St. in Ponoka on Aug. 20, at about 4 p.m., to spread awareness for Black Lives Matter, Indigenous Lives Matter, as well as Pride, and missing Indigenous women.
Slogans shouted included “No justice, no peace, no racist police,” “Return our stolen sisters,” “Silence is violence,” and Black lives, Indigenous lives, and Pride lives matter.
Passerby Nessa Bednar says she wasn’t sure what to think of the protester’s’ messages, but added she was “surprised someone has the guts to do this in Ponoka.”
Some drivers honked their horns in apparent solidarity, while other drives yelled at the protesters, according to A.J. Fallenchild, one of the group’s organizers.
The protest was organized by Black and Indigenous Alliance Alberta. They were joined by interested members of the public from the Ponoka area.
Alliance members come from Blackfalds, Red Deer, and all over central Alberta.
The alliance has been protesting once a week in both Ponoka and Wetaskiwin, for the last few weeks.
Other main organizers include Kisha Daniels and her son, Callum Daniels, who was holding the megaphone and leading the chants.
According to Kisha, the group has brought some issues before Wetaskiwin’s town council that the community has asked them to bring forward, and in Ponoka, so far their goal is simply to raise awareness.
“All lives won’t matter until all lives matter,” said Kisha.
In a Facebook post on Aug. 13, Kisha stated, “Today we marched in your community to bring awareness and change to racial disparities in your community, central Alberta, and our country, as well as in solidarity with Black, Indigenous and Pride folx lives.”
The group marches in Ponoka on Thursdays, meeting at around 3 p.m. and invite members of the public to join them.