CBC News Posted: Apr 18, 2016
Protesters took over offices to demand more be done to address suicides in aboriginal communities
A number of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada offices are closed to the public as protesters continue an occupation that began last week.
INAC issued a news release on Monday saying the offices are staffed but operating in a limited capacity “due to exceptional circumstances.”
Walk-up services are not available but telephone information lines and Internet services are working, the release states.
The following locations are affected:
- Gatineau, Que. (headquarters)
- Toronto, Ont.
- Winnipeg, Man.
- Regina, Sask.
All other INAC regional offices and business centres are open for regular business.
Protesters took over some offices in Toronto and Winnipeg last week, demanding that more be done to address youth suicides in aboriginal communities, including Attawapiskat in Ontario and Cross Lake in Manitoba.
The department responded by closing those offices as well as many of its other offices to the public.
Raquel Kirton, who was among close to 20 people occupying the Winnipeg office on Sunday afternoon, says the protesters are staying put.
The department said in an email late last week that it was working to resume some of its services at alternate locations.
With files from The Canadian Press