Manitoba

Missing, murdered women protest sputters in Winnipeg

They wanted to shut down Canada's economy, but protesters in Winnipeg only managed to block part of a road.
Low turnout for MMIW protest in Winnipeg 1:06

They wanted to shut down Canada's economy, but protesters in Winnipeg only managed to block part of a road.

Local organizers of Shut Down Canada, a protest to demand an independent inquiry into Canada's cases of missing or murdered indigenous women, called on people to gather at the western edge of Winnipeg on Friday.

Less than a half-dozen people showed up, holding signs and attempting to shame Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Protesters gather Friday at the intersection of Portage Avenue and St. Charles Street, at the western edge of Winnipeg. (Angela Johnston/CBC)
Police blocked the westbound lanes of Portage Avenue at St. Charles Street, near the Perimeter Highway, for the event, which wrapped up in the afternoon.

Tina Spence, who came to the protest to raise awareness of missing and murdered indigenous women, said she hopes it will lead to a national inquiry on the issue.

"Well, somebody's got to hear us…. We've got to keep doing this so somebody hears what's taking place," she said.

"It's been going on for too long already. Too many women, girls, men are missing, you know? Nothing's really ever done about it."

Spence said her mother was killed almost 44 years ago and the case was never solved.

Communities across Canada were urged to blockade railways, ports or highways — "don't buy, don't fly, no work and keep the kids home from school" —  to impact the Canadian economy as a way to get Harper's attention.

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