Leslie Blaszk and Brighton Cretney add their voices to the demonstration spurred by the Black Lives Matter movement held along Highway 1 in downtown Salmon Arm on Thursday, June 4. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Youth advocacy group pulls out of Vernon Black Lives Matter protest

Earth Strike Vernon pulled its support after concerns raised about Kelowna, Vernon protests

Earth Strike Vernon, a youth activist group, has pulled out of a Black Lives Matter (BLM) Protest scheduled for today at 3 p.m. after concerns were raised around protests in Kelowna.

After several black community groups stated they aren’t in support of the BLM rally scheduled for noon on June 5 in Kelowna, Earth Strike Vernon said similar questions have been raised about the Vernon BLM protest.

“After hearing the criticisms and concerns raised by independent activists in the community, we feel that we have a moral and ethical responsibility to listen to the voices that we pledge to protect,” the advocacy group’s press secretary Kieran Grandbois wrote in a social media post.

“Otherwise, we aren’t really representing them at all.”

“Earth Strike Vernon will uphold its responsibility to the BIPOC community by pulling out of this upcoming BLM protest,” Grandbois wrote.

In a press release, the advocacy group said the decision to pull did not come lightly but was necessary.

“The organization continues to unwaveringly and ceaselessly support the Black Lives Matter movement,” the release said. “The pulling of support for this protest comes from a place of support for the wider movement.”

View this post on Instagram

!! ATTENTION VERNON !! Recently, questions arose about the Kelowna Black Lives Matter (henceforth, BLM) protest that was scheduled for today. The questions that arose led to a condemnation of the rally by a local BIPOC group. Similar questions have since been raised about the Vernon BLM protest, also scheduled for today. After hearing the criticisms and concerns raised by independent activists in the community, we feel that we have a moral and ethical responsibility to listen to the voices that we pledge to protect. Otherwise, we aren’t really representing them at all. Therefore, the organizers of Earth Strike Vernon have voted to retract our official support and participation for this protest. The vote was unanimous, of all members present. While we remain convinced that the intentions of the activists are good, the voices of the community in question take precedence. While we thank the activists involved for their participation, we recognize our responsibilities as well. We do not wish to create animosity with the activists who organized this event, and we will still maintain our working relationship and connections with them. A copy of a press release has been distributed to local media, voicing the same points as this post. For all intents and purposes, this post does count as an official press release of the Committee for Public Relations. So, in summary: due to the concerns of independent activists in the community, Earth Strike Vernon will uphold its responsibility to the BIPOC community by pulling out of this upcoming BLM protest. Thank you all for your understanding. In Solidarity, Kieran Grandbois Press Secretary | Earth Strike Vernon

A post shared by Earth Strike Vernon (@earthstrike_vernon) on

Earth Strike Vernon said it’s convinced the intentions of the independent activists set to protest today at 3 p.m. in Polson Park are good.

“While we thank the activists involved for their participation, we recognize our responsibilities as well,” Grandbois wrote. “We do not wish to create animosity with the activists who organized this event.”

READ MORE: Community backlash over Black Lives Matter rally in Kelowna

READ MORE: ‘I just felt I had to do something’: Vernon Black Lives Matter protest organizer


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Neighbourhood pond dries up again

The RDCO filled up the pond on Hall Road but it’s drying up again

Intent of killing at centre of Surrey man’s West Kelowna murder trial

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allison Beames is anticipated to return with her decision in August

Car smashes into Kelowna dollar store

The vehicle went through the front window of the store just off Highway 97 North

Interior Health will not expand Police and Crisis Team

Southeast Division Chief Superintendent Brad Haugli asked IH to expand the program

Haze over Okanagan and Shuswap skies may have drifted from Siberia

Few active wildifres so far this summer in B.C.

UPDATE: Military reservist facing 22 charges after allegedly ramming gates at Rideau Hall

The man, who police have not yet officially identified, will be charged with multiple offences

Penticton RCMP seek help locating missing woman

25-year-old Iesha Blomquist was reported missing to Penticton RCMP on June 30

Majority of residents in support of alcohol in outdoor spaces: City of Penticton

City council will vote on whether to continue allowing public consumption, on Tuesday, July 7

Princeton RCMP arrest suspects in violent Salmon Arm home invasion

Two men who allegedly staged a violent home invasion in Salmon Arm… Continue reading

LETTER: Questions raised about Summerland solar project

Site of proposed project has been considered for previous initiatives

Alberta health minister orders review into response after noose found in hospital in 2016

A piece of rope tied into a noose was found taped to the door of an operating room at the Grande Prairie Hospital in 2016

Mini prom celebrates 13 Lake Country grads

Grad’s sister marks occasion with small prom for close friends from quarantine Class of 2020 amid COVID-19

LETTER: Solar project discussion should have been public

Decision by Summerland council was made during a closed session

B.C.’s major rivers surge, sparking flood warnings

A persistent low pressure system over Alberta has led to several days of heavy rain

Most Read