A huge crowd of people marched on Queen’s Park Monday in support of a First Nations fight against a pipeline project in B.C.
The protesters marched in support of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs’ fight to block a pipeline project on their lands. Protests in support of the same cause have already shut down rail traffic across much of the country.
The group assembled at Christie Pitts Park in the city’s west end and started marching east on Bloor Street at around 3 p.m. before eventually ending at Queen’s Park.
Protesters carried placards, banged drums, chanted, and yelled slogans as they marched down the street. They said they want to see the RCMP stay off unceded Wet’suwet’en lands.
Toronto police said traffic and transit were impacted on Bloor Street as the group made its way toward Queen’s Park.
According to a post on the Facebook group “Families for Wet’suwet’en,” roughly 2,000 people were expected to take part.
The protest wrapped up by around 5:30 p.m.
The nationwide protests have paralyzed rail travel across the country as blockades along rail lines in various provinces make it impossible for passenger and freight trains to proceed.
The stoppage has prompted Via Rail to cancel nearly all trips across the country through at least Feb. 19, making things particularly difficult for those trying to get around over the Family Day long weekend.
Greyhound Canada told CP24 that they have added 100 buses across their entire Canadian network since the protests began in order to help meet the added demand brought on by the rail shutdown. Porter Airlines said it had also seen an uptick in bookings as a result of the rail shutdown.
As of Monday, 470 trains have been cancelled because of the blockades and more than 94,000 passengers have been affected, according to VIA Rail.
The company has offered customers full refunds on cancelled trips.