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A ‘Cancel Canada Day’ Sit-In Rally Is Happening At Queen’s Park On July 1

Participants are invited to wear an orange shirt and "remember that this is the day of mourning."

Toronto Associate Editor
Toronto’s Toronto's Cancel Canada Day Rally Will Be A Sit-In For Solidarity

Several Cancel Canada Day rallies are taking place this week in the wake of the harrowing discoveries at residential school sites around the country.

An Indigenous social-led movement called Idle No More is hosting online and in-person events from coast to coast on July 1, including a sit-in outside of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in collaboration with the Halton Hills Alliance for Social Change (HHASC), a BIPOC- and women-led non-profit organization.

HHASC organizers told Narcity they're "not actually sure what to expect'' at the event, but that it will likely be a peaceful sit-in outside of Queen's Park and with a "mini march" down Yonge Street possibly taking place afterwards. The sit-in will be attended by allies and Indigenous groups from throughout the GTA, according to the Facebook event page.

"We are anticipating as many people as possible to show up with protest signs, a blanket, some sunscreen, some water, and we're going to sit outside of the Ontario Legislative Assembly Building," said the organizers.

HHASC is asking participants to wear an orange shirt to commemorate the victims and survivors of residential schools, and to "bring the mindset and remember that this is the day of mourning."

Indigenous community members are also welcome to bring their drums and are invited to speak during an open mic portion of the event.*

A rally and march will take place in Guelph

A march called "Cancel Canada Day: Solidarity with Indigenous People" will begin at the Basilica of Our Lady Immaculate on Norfolk St. in Guelph on Thursday.

One of the event organizers, Desiree Fekete, wrote to Narcity in a text that gathering at this church will be significant because "the churches have yet to [apologize] for their actions, our voices need to be [heard], we need to mourn our loss and we need peace for our families."

Chalk will be offered so attendees can outline their hands or feet on the ground by the church, and allies who plan to come are asked to listen and educate themselves. Fekete said that participants are welcome to wear orange and to bring signs of support instead of Canadian flags.

*This article has been updated.

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