Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made an appearance at the Ottawa anti-racism demonstration at Parliament Hill Friday.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took a knee while attending a demonstration on Parliament Hill that was organized to protest racial injustice and police brutality.— CTV News (@CTVNews) June 5, 2020
Read more here: https://t.co/EqqbPu1nbu pic.twitter.com/Ae1fcO8va1
He was joined by other federal officials, including Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, and Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities.
At a press conference earlier in the day, the prime minister refused to directly answer if he would be in attendance but was seen taking a knee during the protest, wearing a black face mask due to the COVID-19 crisis.
While in attendance, some Canadians in crowd began shouting “stand up to Trump.”
This comes after a week of criticism that Canada’s prime minister refused to directly condemn the U.S. President’s for the actions of police officers and military personnel during American protests.
More specifically, pausing for more than 20 seconds before answering a question on U.S. President Donald Trump using the military to clear protesters with tear gas and rubber bullets during a photo opportunity.
Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders took a knee with anti-black racism demonstrators Friday. Some have criticized police officers kneeling with demonstrators as ringing hollow, considering reports of police violence at U.S. protests in recent days. More: https://t.co/s8zG8SOdDo pic.twitter.com/4niqWhQiv4— CBC Toronto (@CBCToronto) June 5, 2020
Earlier in the day, Toronto’s police chief Mark Saunders took a knee during the protest in that city, taking the time to talk to and thank demonstrators.
The numerous protests that have taken place around the world follow the death of George Floyd who was pinned down under the knee of a Minneapolis police office.
Although Canada’s prime minister participated in Ottawa’s anti-racism protest, many continue to criticize Trudeau about the black face and brown face images of him that surfaced last year.
While other applaud the prime minister for his attendance at Friday’s demonstration, pointing out the “stark difference” in leadership between Trudeau and Trump.
PM #JustinTrudeau walking outside Parliament Hill at anti-racism protests. Some cheers. Some claps. Some boos. Definitely no bible.— Paulo Senra (@paulosenra) June 5, 2020
We have tons of work to do in Canada. Similar systematic challenges here too, but what a stark difference in leadership. #blacklivesmatter pic.twitter.com/g3UB8YO6OY