Protesters out in force to welcome PM Trudeau to Kamloops

By Jill Sperling / James Peters
January 9, 2019 - 11:25am Updated: January 9, 2019 - 3:38pm

KAMLOOPS — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in Kamloops today and protesters arrived outside the Coast Kamloops Hotel and Conference Centre well ahead of his scheduled arrival.

Around 9:00 a.m., protesters with the yellow vest movement arrived outside the hotel, holding picket signs expressing their frustrations with the prime minister.

Trudeau appeared at a noon hour Liberal Party fundraiser.

Steve Vadnais was among the protestors, many wearing yellow safety vests.

He says governments are making it hard to be Canadian.

"I used to be a proud Canadian; I'm not so proud anymore. The equalization payments, the carbon tax being shoved down our throats... the [United Nations global compact on migration]. It's not fair. We didn't agree to that. Why should it be put on us?"

Another demonstration took place at the other end of the building, where Dennis Giesbrecht with Share BC hosted a "brown bag lunch".

He hopes to raise some concerns over the hold-up in the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and foreign money being used to fund protest groups.

Giesbrecht says not everyone can afford a $300-a-plate luncheon with the prime minister.

He says everyone is welcome — including Trudeau.

"That would be awesome. The average working guy is used to getting up in the morning and going out and doing this sort of thing every day. It would be nice to see him do it at least the once with us, and maybe we can get some of our concerns across."

First Nations protestors have joined the demonstration outside of the hotel as well.

The prime minister spoke at a fundraiser earlier this afternoon. 

Many are unhappy with how the RCMP stepped in this week to enforce a court order at the Wet'suwet'en First Nation to allow construction of a natural gas pipeline.

This evening, Trudeau will host a town hall at the TRU gymnasium.

Trudeau touts Liberal government accomplishments in luncheon speech to supporters