Six Nations Solidarity

News | Background | What you can do | Links 

Caledonia residents take case to Queen's Park

Guelph Mercury
Toronto (Jun 22, 2006)

[SISIS note: The following mainstream news article is provided for reference only, as an example of how mainstream media treats indigenous resistance to genocide. Mainstream media often presents biased and distorted information, lacking pertinent facts and/or context. Inclusion of this article on our site should not be considered an endorsement by SISIS.]

Emotionally exhausted Caledonia residents are begging Queen's Park to give them their lives back by resolving the tense four-month native occupation in their town.

Seventy residents yesterday trekked to Toronto to protest government inaction and lack of communication that has left them facing lawlessness, intimidation and unsafe conditions.

Carrying placards demanding federal and provincial leadership and chanting "protect our kids" and "we want peace," they implored MPPs not to forget them when the Legislature is in summer recess.

"I would like to live a normal life again," said a stressed-out Sandra Watson whose home backs onto the occupied Douglas Creek Estates natives say belongs to them. "I'd like to live without fear. I'd like my children to play outside safely again... I would just like to get rid of this sick feeling in my stomach. I've been on edge for four months."

Earlier, at the Toronto Metro Convention Centre, members of another Caledonia group, the Citizens Alliance, met briefly with Premier Dalton McGuinty.

McGuinty told reporters he made no promises. "I listened, I just heard them out," he said.

The residents were glad someone has finally been able to meet face-to-face with the premier, and deemed their trip to Queen's Park a success.

Opposition Leader John Tory told the group he is impressed residents want to return to living in harmony with their aboriginal neighbours.

"If leadership had happened sooner, and in a more focused way, we could have avoided a lot of the pain, " he said.

Native protester Doreen Silversmith challenged Tory for saying everyone should be subject to the same rule of law. She repeated the natives' stance that they are their own sovereign nation and have their own laws.

"Don't interfere with our lives," she said. Later she told the media non-aboriginals "are doing things to us too. They're putting our own kids in danger too...They're not as innocent as people portray them."

Six Nations resident arrested

Also yesterday, prominent Six Nations businessman Ken Hill has been arrested and charged with two counts of assault in connection with a fracas on a Caledonia street June 4.

Hill, 47, senior supply and marketing officer and 10 per cent shareholder in Ohsweken-based cigarette manufacturer Grand River Enterprises Six Nations Ltd., was arrested by the OPP in Cayuga yesterday morning without incident. He will appear in Cayuga court July 19.

Hill is one of six people named in a batch of warrants issued for various charges by the OPP following three violent incidents around the native occupied Douglas Creek Estates June 9.

Bail was granted yesterday to another person arrested under those warrants. Four other warrants for a variety of charges are still outstanding. A seventh warrant in relation to the June 9 incidents has yet to be issued.

An OPP spokesperson said yesterday the charges against Hill relate to a pushing and shoving incident between native protesters and Caledonia residents June 4. There were no injuries.

The altercation at the barricade was sparked when an OPP vehicle which made a wrong turn onto the Sixth Line -- an agreed upon no-go zone for police -- was surrounded by natives and the officers inside were ticketed for trespassing. Caledonia residents rushed to their side of the barricades and an altercation followed.

OPP spokesperson Constable Dennis Harwood said Hill was arrested "at a Cayuga business" just after 7 a.m.

Also yesterday, a British Columbia woman facing intimidation and robbery charges in the alleged swarming of a Simcoe couple and attacks on journalists was released on $10,000 cash bail. She was also ordered to stay out of Caledonia where she was involved in the Douglas Creek Estates protest.

Audra Taillefer, 45, of Victoria, B.C., was also prohibited from contacting four other protesters being sought in connection with the June 9 incident at the Canadian Tire parking lot.

Arrested on the Six Nations reserve last Friday, Taillefer had spent five days in custody before her bail hearing yesterday in front of Justice of the Peace Norm Mulloy.

Mulloy agreed to release her after Trevor Edward Butler, 40, of Port Perry, put up $10,000 in cash, pledged another $5,000 without depositing the money and agreed to act as her surety until the case comes to court.

BackBack to updates

Back Top