Protestors temporarily block the Johnson Street Bridge in Victoria during a protest earlier this year. (Black Press Media file photo)

Protesters to block Johnson Street bridge during Monday evening rush-hour

Organizers demand action in face of the climate crisis

Using the Johnson Street Bridge to get home on Monday may be a little more hectic than usual as Extinction Rebellion (XR) plans to block the bridge as part of a nationwide #BridgeOut campaign.

While cyclists, pedestrians and emergency vehicles will be allowed through, organizers say this escalation in tactics is the minimum of what’s necessary to give young people a fighting chance at a decent future.

Starting at 3:30 p.m., activists will meet at the small plaza at Store Street and Pandora Avenue before making their way onto the bridge to stop traffic until 7:30 p.m.

“Shutting down the bridge symbolizes that we are on a bridge to nowhere,” said Mark Nykanen, an XR spokesperson. “With droughts, deadly heatwaves and hurricanes wiping out entire islands and cities, nature is sending us a 911 call about the climate emergency … [we need] to be first responders and take action.”

READ ALSO: PHOTOS: Thousands hit streets of Victoria for Global Climate Strike

XR’s core demands consist of:

1. The government must tell the truth about the climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.

2. Government must act immediately to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.

3. Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.

4. Decarbonization and decolonization cannot occur without deep respect and meaningful support for indigenous sovereignty, title and rights.

The Victoria Police Department said they are aware of the event and will be providing additional updates on Sunday and Monday through their twitter account @vicpdcanada.

“As always with public demonstrations and protests, our focus will be on ensuring public safety at the event,” said Bowen Osoko, VicPD Spokesperson.

Premier John Horgan also weighed in late Monday morning. “I don’t believe it’s ever a good idea to frustrate other peoples’ lives to make your point.”

He noted there are other ways for protestors to demonstrate and raise their concerns.

“We’re in the middle of a federal election campaign. There are many issues in the commons, and people want to raise those issues to the top of the debate. There is a federal debate this evening and I’m certain that climate action and climate change will be part of that.”

READ ALSO: Students won’t be punished for missing class for climate walkouts, say local school districts

This is one of many bridge takeovers happening across the country. One is planned for the Burrard Bridge in Vancouver on the same day.

The event follows last week’s Global Climate Strike — that saw thousands of people attend in Victoria alone — and a week of action prior to that. More than 150 countries around the world participated in the strikes, which are inspired by Greta Thunberg.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BREAKING: Pat Bay Highway blockade underway

About 80 people blocking major highway

Life complicated when water not secure

Water issues have real-life impacts in Sooke Region

Work begins on Otter Point Road project in Sooke

The project now has a fall completion date following a long delay

Central Saanich Police prepared for afternoon shut-down of Highway 17

Sgt. Paul Brailey questions efficacy of protest

City of Langford rebrands, announces several projects

‘Langford, where it all happens’ is the City’s new slogan

WATCH: Sooke’s top stories

A round-up of this week’s top stories

Donations pour in for family who lost father, son in fatal crash on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Vancouver Island RCMP officer assaulted during traffic stop

On Feb. 21, a member of the Comox Valley RCMP was assaulted… Continue reading

B.C. man who pulled a gun on off-duty cop gets two years in prison

Encounter also led police to a home where 100 guns and explosives were found

Protecting privacy key to stopping spread of COVID-19, B.C. health officials say

The number of coronavirus cases in B.C. remains at seven

COLUMN: Forestry no longer close to top of B.C.’s economy

Our reactions to a forestry downturn reflect the past, not the present

Caught on camera: Police release video of man who allegedly stole seaplane in Vancouver

Police say the man broke into the Harbour Air terminal and then got into one of the seaplanes in the harbour

51 health professionals send letter to Trudeau, Horgan panning northern B.C. pipeline

They point to studies about the health and climate change risks from pipeline

Most Read