Updated: Major Pickering intersection shut down for anti-LGBT protest


Published September 20, 2023 at 3:09 pm

Anti-LGBT protestors and Durham police showdown over acces to a Hwy. 401 overpass causing traffic back up. via Caryma Sa'd.

Update 4:15 p.m.: Police have announced the area near the Kingston Rd. and Pickering Pkwy. Hwy. 401 has reopened to all traffic.

The crowd of anti-LGBT protestors making their way to Pickering City Hall has resulted in the shutdown of one of the city’s busiest intersections.

The 1 Million March 4 Children came through many Canadian communities on Sept. 20 to protest what they see as “gender ideology” present in school curriculums they believe are “indoctrinating” children. However, the group’s leadership has also been heavily linked to broadly anti-LGBT statements and rhetoric despite assertions they are not a homophobic movement.

The march began around 9 a.m. at the Durham District School Board (DDSB) headquarters and made its way toward the Pickering City Hall. The DDSB, Whitby Mayor Elizabeth Roy and Pickering Mayor Kevin Ashe all condemned the march as homophobic and transphobic.

The march had been planned for some time and counter-protestors came out to challenge the initial march. In some areas of the route, counter-protestors seemed to outnumber those in the march.

Durham Regional Police announced early in the morning that they would be on-site throughout the route to maintain the peace. They additionally confirmed they were not there to “escort” the march but to maintain public safety.

Several small conflicts seemed to arise despite the police presence. Lawyer Caryma S’ad has been on site with counter-protestors throughout the march and has recorded several.

As the march approached city hall, police announced there was significant traffic impacts on Pickering Pkwy. and Liverpool Rd. They’ve advised motorists to avoid the area until the crowd disperses. According the Sa’d the marchers planned to swarm up the Hwy. 401 overpass. However police officers formed a line and would not allow the protestors access.

“There have been significant traffic impacts as a result of the 1 Million March 4 Children protest taking place. Avoid the Liverpool and Kingston Rd on Highway 401 vicinity and consider using alternative routes,” Pickering said.

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