On November 10, 2011 some students at McGill University occupied an administration building and a larger protest took place outside the building on campus. Riot police were called to the scene and dispersed the crowd using pepper spray. There are also allegations that protesters and passersby were struck with batons. Student protests have long been an important part of a variety of social movements and freedom of expression and peaceful assembly on campus are core values that should be protected and defended by all members of a university community. The presence of riot police on a university campus is particularly concerning and the events leading up to this presence, as well as police conduct on campus, should be thoroughly investigated.
CCLA has written to McGill’s Principal expressing concerns about the manner in which the protest was handled and urged the Principal to make a complaint to the Police Ethics Commissioner so that the actions of thep olice can be appropriately investigated and addressed. Read the CCLA’s letter here.