Idle No More rally held in downtown Winnipeg
Hundreds of people converged upon Winnipeg's Portage Avenue and Main Street this afternoon to take part in a rally as part of the nationwide Idle No More movement to raise awareness of First Nations issues.
At least 200 people gathered at the iconic downtown intersection as the rally, which was billed as a flash mob, and traditional round dance began at 3 p.m. CT.
The round dance went on for less than half an hour before the intersection re-opened to traffic.
"The energy you get when you're there is so positive — not only watching the round dance, but watching people watching the round dance," Tricia Seymour, one of the organizers, said prior to Monday's event.
"That's what I think I get more excitement from…. You feel really empowered."
Almost 2,000 Facebook users had indicated that they would attend the event at Portage and Main.
The Idle No More movement has been gaining momentum since it began earlier this month, thanks in large part to social media websites like Facebook and Twitter.
The movement is protesting the federal government's recent omnibus legislation, Bill C-45, which First Nations people say violates their treaty rights and weakens environmental laws.
Protesters have also been expressing their frustration with what they say is a lack of consultation by the government on treaty issues.