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SATURDAY: A Montreal protest demanding justice for Joyce Echaquan

The 37-year-old Atikamekw mother of seven died horribly in Joliette on Monday.

UPDATED 6:15 p.m.: Place Emilie Gamelin will be the site of a protest demanding justice for Joyce Echaquan, the Atikamekw woman who died at a Joliette hospital on Monday after being tied to her bed and ridiculed by staff and subsequently neglected her as she called for help. Echaquan, a 37-year-old mother of seven, live-streamed her mistreatment on Facebook.

Quebec Premier François Legault told reporters earlier this week that at least one of the abusive nurses had been fired, and the orderly who was also heard in the video was fired today, but according to a CBC report, legal experts say that police should investigate the incident as a hate-motivated homicide. (Echaquan was given morphine even though staff knew that she was allergic to it and that she had a heart problem.) Legault condemned the abusive hospital staff and expressed condolences to Echaquan’s family publicly and privately, but continues to deny that Quebec has a systemic racism problem.

A Justice for Joyce protest took place outside the Joliette hospital last night, and another is planned for Parliament Hill in Ottawa today (Thursday) at 6:30 p.m.

Organizers of the Montreal rally and march encourage participants to bring drums, and note that masks and distancing are, of course, mandatory. Scheduled speakers include Native Women’s Shelter executive director Nakuset, Mohawk activist and artist Ellen Gabriel and Québec Solidaire party leader Manon Massé.

“Join us peacefully in solidarity on behalf of Joyce Echaquan and her family! We are gathering community members and allies to mourn, share and bring awareness for the mistreatment and systemic racism against an Attikamek woman.”

—Justice for Joyce Montreal organizers

For more details about the Montreal protest, please visit the Facebook event page.

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