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Rain stops, sun shines on 39th annual Walk for Peace, Social Justice and the Environment

Walk for Peace moves down Victoria Street.

Walk for Peace moves down Victoria Street.

NEWS — The sun broke through just in time and for long enough for 220 marchers to take a message of peace through the streets of downtown Kamloops today.

It was the annual walk for Peace, Social Justice and the Environment sponsored by the Kamloops Branch of the Council of Canadians. The causes were wide-ranging, reflected in hand-written placards urging action on everything from health care to saving humpback whales to stopping Ajax and fracking.

Before the march got underway, several speakers set the tone. Cynthia Ross-Friedman of the Kamloops Area Preservation Association denounced the process under which KGHM’s Ajax mine project is being assessed, calling it “flawed.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA“The process laid out was never intended to assess a mine so close to 90,000 people,” said Ross-Friedman, a professor at Thompson Rivers University. “As a scientist I can tell you that the process is flawed.”

Kamloops and District Labour Council president Peter Kerek said major corporations such as Walmart and KGHM have different ways of influencing public opinion through the media and that people have to seek other sources of information.

“It’s important for us to find out our information from outside the mainstream media,” he said.

Rick Turner of the Kamloops Health Coalition warned about a legal challenge by Vancouver-based for-profit clinic operator Dr. Brian Day, who is contending that B.C. medicare violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Should Day win in court, doctors would be allowed to set the fees they charge patients.

“If he’s successful we can pretty well say goodbye to our public health-care system,” said Turner.

After the speeches, the parade walked out of the Stuart Wood elementary school grounds and circled down to Victoria Street with a police escort for traffic safety. Some sang the John Lennon song. “Give Peace a Chance” as they walked.

City councillors Donovan Cavers and Arjun Singh took part in the walk.

Anita Strong, chair of the Kamloops Branch of Council of Canadians, speaks before the walk.

Anita Strong, chair of the Kamloops Branch of
Council of Canadians, speaks before the walk.

Walk for Peace gets underway.

Walk for Peace gets underway.

About Mel Rothenburger (9230 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

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