How we got here
On November 23 2020, organizers were fined for violating COVID-19 regulations during a peaceful two week sit-in at Hamilton City Hall. Organizers were demanding a reduction in the Hamilton Police Service budget and an investment into supporting unhoused Hamiltonians. The largest fine of up to $100,000 with possible jail time was issued to a single individual.
Similarly, on May 16, 2021, organizers and attendees of a pro-Palestine rally, calling for an end to the Israeli occupation, were issued multiple tickets by Hamilton Police Services and are also facing fines of up to $100,000 and potential incarceration.
In both these instances, young Black and Palestinian community members, Sarah Jama, Wala Sofi and Hashid Mansur Ali, were targeted by the Hamilton Police Service, intimidated, and threatened with the maximum fines for breaking COVID-19 rules.
Defund Hamilton Police Services (HPS) and Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) McMaster hosted a press conference on Monday, July 5th at 8:30 AM to call for these charges against peaceful protestors to be dropped.
We demand that provincal prosecutor H. Lynne Stewart and Hamilton Municipal Prosecutor Linda Clayton drop all charges against peaceful protestors at the Defund HPS and SPHR rallies.