At the Oct 12 public hearing, a disabled resident of downtown and community organizer shared their experience of the convoy.
“As a lifelong community organizer, I’ve had many experiences on the front lines of protests including being arrested. Having seen social media posts of Ottawa Police members fist bumping, high-fiving, speaking fairly highly of and providing supplies to convoy participants, it was my assessment that if there was an incident, convoy participants would not be the ones to experience police violence, it would be the most marginalized members of our community, and I could not support an event that created that level of risk.
I cooked my first meals on the weekend of February 5th. The first person I delivered to lived in the red zone. They messaged me because they were running out of food. I packed up a few days worth of food and I walked into the red zone to meet them. From there Ottawa Community Cooks began to organize on the Centretown Helpers discord where we coordinated our schedule. We sustained a program that ran for six days each week throughout the occupation. Roughly 50% of our requests came from ODSP recipients. Many of our recipients had limited mobility, using devices like wheelchairs and walkers. These recipients told me that the convoy made the city unsafe for them. One recipient said that they’d been homeless through their youth but that this was the first time that they truly felt scared for their safety.”
You can view the full testimony here.