Hundreds have demonstrated across Victoria in recent weeks in support of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs. (Black Press Media file photo)

POLL: Have the disruptions caused by the recent protests made you more likely to support their cause?

If you live in Greater Victoria, it’s been pretty hard to miss the protests of the natural gas pipeline and the disruption it has caused on daily life around the city.

Protesters have been camped out on the steps of the B.C. Legislature since Feb. 6, occasionally expanding their action to block traffic on nearby roads and bridges, with traffic being brought to a halt on both the Johnson and Point Ellice bridges Monday night. The sit-in at the Legislature, complete with campfire, also prevented the normal pomp and ceremony associated with the speech from the throne Tuesday afternoon.

The protesters are attempting to drum up support for the blockades set up along the Coastal GasLink pipeline route near Smithers, by Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs and their supporters. The pipeline is part of a $40 billion LNG Canada export terminal project that Premier John Horgan says will bring vital economic support to northern B.C. The project has received approval from both the federal and provincial governments, as well as all 20 elected Indigenous councils along the route, including the Wet’suwet’en.

The hereditary chiefs and their supporters say the community’s elected officials only have authority over reserve lands, since their power was created through the Indian Act. That argument may have gained some traction with the generally left-leaning population of the capital region, had they not seen their own daily lives disrupted by a dispute they had no role in. It, no doubt, is a feeling shared by those Island residents who had to endure sailing waits caused by many of the same protesters who blocked entrance to the Swartz Bay Ferry Terminal just a few weeks ago.

ALSO READ: One-sailing wait from Swartz Bay ferry terminal after morning protest

Victoria residents aren’t alone in feeling the wrath of the so-called land defenders, with similar protests taking place in Vancouver, including at the port facility, and across the country.

The right to peaceful protest is one of the most sacred tenets of a democratic nation. But when those protests create needless hardship on ordinary citizens, they become counter-productive and undermine the very cause they are attempting to promote.

What are your views on the recent protests? Take our poll and let us know your thoughts.


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

Just Posted

Study looks at feasibility of Vancouver Island abattoir

South Island Prosperity Partnership funds study looking at local meat processing

Bike lane closed, traffic impacted by landscaping in Metchosin

Construction begins May 25, to be complete by mid-July

Royal B.C. Museum reopens in phases, some galleries remain closed to start summer

Victoria museum and archives open first galleries June 19

Saanich farm stands can stay open

Council amending bylaw to allow for temporary use permits

B.C. records no new COVID-19 deaths for the first time in weeks

Good news comes despite 11 new test-positive cases in B.C. in the past 24 hours

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Tahsis opens its gates to visitors to save local economy

Seasonal local businesses that rely on tourism hope to survive despite drop in tourist numbers

BC Corrections to expand list of eligible offenders for early release during pandemic

Non-violent offenders are being considered for early release through risk assessment process

Fraser Valley driver featured on ‘Highway Thru Hell’ TV show dies

Monkhouse died Sunday night of a heartattack, Jamie Davis towing confirmed

Island city cancels plan for homeless camp; exploring alternative option

The plan heard strong objection from neighbouring residents and businesses

B.C. visitor centres get help with COVID-19 prevention measures

Destination B.C. gearing up for local, in-province tourism

36 soldiers test positive for COVID-19 after working in Ontario, Quebec care homes

Nearly 1,700 military members are working in long-term care homes overwhelmed by COVID-19

Most Read