Tensions are rising in Caledonia after a judge granted permanent status to interim injunction to have Six Nations protestors stop their blockade of the Mackenzie Meadows housing site in Caledonia. A bus was tipped over, blocking highway 6, and a hydro pole was set on fire, knocking out power to a number of homes. Today there were reports of a backhoe being used to rip up a roadway. Police cars were damaged and OPP confirmed they used rubber bullets at one point in the disturbance.
At a news conference today Premier Doug ford seemed to be suggesting that stronger enforcement measures were coming. “I’ve talked to the Chief there and I’m going to be very blunt—I’m not going to tolerate violence. I don’t know if a few folks are going rogue, but the way you get things settled is by sitting around the table talking about solutions. You don’t go after our police, you don’t start burning telephone poles, you don’t start digging up roads—that’s unacceptable, and we won.t tolerate it.”
Ford said he sympathizes with the people who have bought homes in the subdivision.
Judge John Harper said the courts must recognize the history of abuses against Indigenous people, but grievances in Canada must be dealt with “respectfully,” in good faith and by following the courts’ orders. “That has not been done in this case,” Harper said. The judge heard representations from Foxgate Developments who argued they have proof that they are lawfully in possession of the property. Lawyer Woody McKaig for Haldimand County argued the injunction had to be made permanent or else these types of blockades would continue to happen.
Lawyers for Ontario and the federal government were listening in on Zoom but did not participate.
Premier Ford said “we will do whatever it takes to have peaceful dialogue—not violent dialogue—peaceful dialogue. We’ve got to take care of the bad apples—they’re causing problems.”