Canadian cities hold March for our Lives events in wake of Florida shooting

Hundreds of people support the massive March for Our Lives event in Washington, D.C.

Hundreds of people have joined events in cities across Canada to in support the March for our Lives march in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, March 24. (The Canadian Press)

More than a dozen Canadian cities hosted marches Saturday to call for stricter gun control laws in both Canada and the United States in the wake of a deadly high school shooting that killed 17 people in Parkland, Fla.

In both Montreal and Toronto, several hundred people joined local events in support of the massive March for Our Lives rally in Washington, D.C., which was organized by American students calling for change in the wake of the tragedy.

In one of Montreal’s two marches, hundreds of protesters swayed together singing to the tune of “Glory, Hallelujah” before setting off towards the city’s U.S. Consulate.

Ellen Gozansky Malka, a Montrealer now living in Parkland, told the crowd that two of her children were at the school during the shooting and saw things no child should see.

“Our children should never fear going to school, and they should never jump at the sound of a book falling on the floor,” she said to appreciative applause.

“This will have a lasting effect on our community. We have to make sure this will never happen again anywhere, anywhere in the world.”

READ MORE: Vancouver artist’s cartoon of Florida school shooting resonates

A few blocks away, a slightly smaller event was organized by 11-year-old elementary school student Lexington Vickery, who led about 150 cheering classmates and supporters on a raucous march in support of American children.

“Its about making them feel better, and making them feel more supported and working to help them so they can have more courage to go to the government and get their gun legislation,” the sixth-grader explained in an interview beforehand.

In Toronto, marchers carried signs protesting both gun violence in the United States and recent shootings that have plagued the city as they marched from a downtown square to the U.S. Consulate.

An organizer told local news station CP24 that while Canada doesn’t experience mass shootings on the same scale as the U.S., Toronto has seen a number of high-profile fatal shootings recently.

Police have said that last weekend, an innocent man was gunned down in a “cowardly” attack after visiting friends. The following day, two people were shot and killed outside of a bowling alley — one of the victims was allegedly targeted, and the other was described by police as a bystander.

“I think it’s important to have this march today in solidarity with students in the United States because gun violence is taking its toll on families, individuals, communities across North America. In Toronto we’ve seen a hundred per cent increase in gun violence homicides over the last three years,” said Louis March, a co-founder of Toronto’s Zero Gun Violence Movement.

“We can do better.”

Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend the march in Washington, D.C., with smaller gatherings to take place in hundreds of cities across the world.

Morgan Lowrie, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Trafalgar student hit by car while walking to school

The 13 year old lost two teeth and suffered head injuries

Expedia: Nelson is historic and hoppin’

The travel website put Nelson on two best-of lists for its history and beer

Faust faces challenger in RDCK Area E

In Area F, Tom Newell is elected by acclamation

New tennis courts opening Saturday at LVR

The multi-sport facility will be open to the public

Mayoral races in Kaslo, Silverton, Salmo, and New Denver

Slocan mayor acclaimed for second term

VIDEO: Messages of hope, encouragement line bars of B.C. bridge

WARNING: This story contains references to suicide and may not be appropriate for all audiences.

Fresh-faced Flames fend off Canucks 4-1

Vancouver drops second straight NHL exhibition contest

VIDEO: B.C. deer struggles with life-preserver caught in antlers

Campbell River resident captures entangled deer on camera

Scheer pushes Trudeau to re-start Energy East pipeline talks

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer questioned the Prime Minister over Trans Mountain project

Mistaken identity: Missing dog claimed in Moose Jaw belongs to another family

Brennen Duncan was reunited with a white Kuvasz that was found in Saskatchewan

Abandoned kitten safe and sound thanks to B.C. homeless man

‘Jay’ found little black-and-white kitten in a carrier next to a dumpster by a Chilliwack pet store

Police chief defends controversial marijuana seizure

Advocates said cannabis was part of an opioid-substitution program in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

Trans Mountain completes Burrard Inlet spill exercise

Training required, some work continues on pipeline expansion

Supporters of B.C. man accused of murdering Belgian tourist pack courtoom

Family and friends of Sean McKenzie, 27, filled the gallery for brief court appearance in Chilliwack

Most Read