Dozens gather to shine light on Wetaskiwin violence Sept. 21

No city council members attend vigil in Jubilee Park

By Stu Salkeld The Pipestone Flyer

Depending on whom you ask, Wetaskiwin has a crime problem, or the city’s crime problem is not worse than any other community the same size. However, dozens of people gathered at Jubilee Park Sept. 21 to shine a light on violence.

The “Violence Vigil” was organized by local resident Susan Kokas, who lives in the area near the park and noted during her opening remarks a murder had recently occurred in that area. She said there were many reasons a vigil should be held, among them to shine a light on violence in the community, to remember people who lost their lives and to those who survived.

Kokas noted she herself is a survivor of violence. When she was living in Calgary several years ago, she had been targeted, stalked and attacked.

“I lived in fear for a long time,” said Kokas. She said it’s very likely everyone knows someone who is a survivor of violence.

She said survivors walk a fine line between extremes. “I don’t want to live in fear, but I don’t want to be a vigilante.”

Wetaskiwin NDP MLA Bruce Hinkley spoke briefly, noted Sept. 21 is the International Day of Peace.

Other survivors of violence also spoke, including a young girl who noted her father had been murdered.

Kokas stated she felt community leaders must address violence in Wetaskiwin.

Other speakers pointed out that much could be done to make Wetaskiwin a safer, friendlier community, such as getting to know your neighbours and looking out for each other.

No members of the Wetaskiwin city council were present for the vigil and only one candidate for council, Phil Houle-Gregg, attended.

Stu.salkeld@pipestoneflyer.ca

Just Posted

County of Wetaskiwin finds encroachment claim unfounded

Living quarters in garage had to be removed: County planner

New executive director for Pigeon Lake Watershed Association

Catherine Peirce has experience working with governments, non-profits

Theft of $140,000 in machinery investigated in County of Wetaskiwin

Wetaskiwin RCMP investigate theft of pipe fusion equipment

County of Wetaskiwin may change firefighting billing

Currently ‘user pay,’ may go to countywide fees on tax bills

Wetaskiwin man facing 17 charges after Oct. 9 arrest

Wetaskiwin RCMP locate and arrest prolific offender

VIDEO: First legal cannabis purchases as midnight strikes in eastern Canada

Newfoundland and Labrador was the first province to kick off the sale of cannabis, just after midnight local time

U.S. pot firm urges Trump to deny Canadian producers ‘competitive advantage’

The challenge for U.S. firms lies in the fact that while recreational cannabis is legal in nine states and medicinal pot in 22 others, it remains illegal under federal law

How rules for inmate segregation in Canada will change under Bill C-83

Federal government proposing changes to rules around inmates in federal correctional institutions

Canada Post union issues strike notice; rotating strikes could begin Monday

Union says rotating strikes will begin if agreements aren’t reached with bargaining units

Killer-rapist Paul Bernardo set for parole bid after 25 years in prison

Bernardo’s parole hearing at the Bath Institution is expected to attract numerous observers

Defence cautions against mob justice in Calgary child neglect trial

Jennifer and Jeromie Clark of Calgary have pleaded not guilty to criminal negligence causing death

Feds eyeing options to expedite pardons for minor pot convictions

Internal discussions have focused on an application-based process for speeding up pot pardons

U.S. pot firms urge Trump to dominate North American marijuana industry

Cannabis producers claim the U.S. is “rapidly losing” its competitive advantage to Canada

Federal government tables bill to transform prisoner segregation

Administrative and disciplinary segregation will be eliminated by Ottawa

Most Read