Medicine Hat, AB - The Yellow-Vest movement has now been in Medicine Hat for six straight weeks.
As you can imagine, that is a lot of time for publicity and unfortunately in the world of social-media, a lot of time for negativity as well.
Earlier this weeks, posts surfaced on both Facebook and Twitter on several Yellow-Vest Canada pages, where users were posting death-threats to Prime Minister (PM) Justin Trudeau. The posts have now been taken down.
Because of that, Organizer of the Yellow-Vest rallies in Medicine Hat, Tamara Lich, says the group has been debating a name change.
"With everything that happened, we're looking at changing the name to something like 'Canadian Initiatives, Medicine Hat YV'," explained Lich. "We want to stay true to the original movement and I feel like we're getting a lot of momentum here."
To be clear, there have been no death-threats issued to the PM from the Yellow-Vest Medicine Hat Facebook page.
Lich says because of this negative publicity, organizers have now issued a very specific set of rules on their page.
"Stay positive is number one. We don't want any name calling, bashing or belittlement. Respecting peoples privacy is also a big one. We will not tolerate threats, hate speech or anything like that. We don't want that kind of stigma attached to our cause."
Fortunately, there hasn't been any major issues with the Yellow-Vest movement here in Medicine Hat.
"We don't want to be violent and we don't want to be disruptive, we just want to make a statement. Thankfully, there has been no violence or threats at our rallies. Sure, people are angry, but we want to get our message out in a positive way."
Lich says Medicine Hat is a great community and she thanks lady-luck for the fact that there have been no major issues at these rallies.
"I know in Calgary and Edmonton there were a few scuffles that happened. We have been really fortunate and haven't had any push back from any anti-protesters here in Medicine Hat. People are hurting and people are angry, but we're trying to make sure that we're doing this in a respectful manner. Not just us as individuals, but to the community as well."
If things were to get out of hand, Lich says protesters have the full support of the Medicine Hat Police Service (MHPS).
"I've been speaking with the MHPS and I've explained to them our concerns. They've been very supportive of what we're doing and they know we have a good group of people here who are very peaceful. We're just concerned citizens that are trying to make a difference."
Now, when will this all end?
"We're going to keep going until we see some changes made and we know we've been heard. We want all Canadians treated fairly and if it takes us protesting right up until the election (Federal and Provincial), then so be it."
The next rally will be held on Saturday, January 19th from 12-2 p.m outside of the old Boston Pizza location on Dunmore Road.
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