Date/time: Friday, March 15, starting at 5 PM

Location: Courtyard area of Winnipeg City Hall (510 Main Street)

Winnipeg, Manitoba - On Friday, March 15th, a rally and march will be held to mark International Day Against Police Brutality (IDAPB), starting at Winnipeg City Hall at 5 PM. It will feature several speakers including Jody Beardy (partner of Elias Whitehead, killed by the WPS on Oct. 15, 2023) and Brian Wood (father of James Wood, killed by the WPS on Jan. 27, 2024), along with representatives of Migrante/Anakbayan Manitoba and Queers For Palestine Winnipeg. Recognizing the international nature of the day, the event will link the constant police killings and violence in Winnipeg with related issues such as borders and deportations, raids on encampments and blockades, and rising transphobia and queerphobia.

This year’s IDAPB takes place on the same day as Winnipeg’s Executive Policy Committee is hearing budget delegations. The proposed version of the multi-year budget plans to award the WPS an additional $31 million in annual city-supported operating spending over the next four years, while defunding vital life-sustaining services such as Millennium Library’s Community Connections space. Further, countless other areas whose funding would actually improve safety — such as public housing, safe consumption sites, safe drug supply, non-police crisis response, and income supports — remain entirely unfunded. City council is once again choosing to entrench racist and anti-poor criminalization while undermining the basic services that people need to survive.

Higher police budgets increase police interactions and consequent violence. Since last IDAPB, the WPS has killed at least another nine people, including Michael Sankar, Elias Whitehead, Dustin Hatcher, Afolabi Opaso, James Wood, and Bradley Singer. Police violence takes many forms, including assaults and serious injuries, intimidation, surveillance, and incarceration. Such violence cannot be reformed away with expensive and ineffective technologies like body cameras or “better training.” Rather, this violence is inherent to policing. It can only be reduced by defunding the police and reallocating the ever-growing police budget to life-sustaining services.

The rally will include live ASL interpretation and a livestream to social media. There will also be snacks and information available. The rally and march will be followed by a community dinner.

We welcome members of the media to attend and will be able to respond to interview requests. Please contact to arrange an interview in advance.