VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Six protesters taking part in a mock funeral procession through downtown Friday in Vancouver have been arrested.
The “Funeral For Extinction” protest was organized by Extinction Rebellion.
“Between 12 and 7 p.m., police were forced to arrest six people for mischief after they stopped traffic and erected structures blocking a main intersection. Protestors perched themselves on top of the structures and refused to leave the area, despite several requests, and then warnings, from officers,” says a news release from the Vancouver Police Department.
Flora, who didn’t want her last name published, arrived just after the arrests.
“A few rebels installed themselves on top of tripods at Robson and Burrard. It was sort of an occupation of that intersection. I just saw the end of it when they got taken down. They went peacefully and it was just sort of part of the disruption.”
After the arrests, the group moved on to Robson and Thurlow.
— Renee Bernard (@Renee1130) November 30, 2019
She says the protesters understand that their demonstrations can be frustrating for people driving and shopping downtown. But Friday’s action is meant to challenge business as usual.
“Robson is a popular shopping spot. So, we’ll maybe get people to think a little bit about whether they really need all that stuff in their bags or whether they could be doing something better with their time, like joining us in the street.”
Since the event started at 1 p.m., traffic has been disrupted by people walking through the city’s commercial and financial districts near Robson and Burrard.
The group chose to host the event on Black Friday because of what they describe as the “over-consumption of unnecessary goods.”
“We will mourn for the future of our planet, our ecosystems, and the lives lost due to climate crisis,” organizers said in a Facebook post.
Before the protest, a spokesperson said the demonstration will “provide an alternative to the culture of corporate consumerism that has contributed to climate change.”
Ten protesters from Extinction Rebellion were arrested after they blocked the Burrard Street Bridge in October.
With files from Kurtis Doering