Thousands of women march in Winnipeg, across Canada
The Canadian Press
Published Saturday, January 21, 2017 12:44PM CST
Last Updated Saturday, January 21, 2017 6:49PM CST
Protests are being held across Canada today in support of the Women's March on Washington.
In Winnipeg, people packed into the atrium at Portage Place Shopping Centre in downtown. They then marched down Portage Avenue to gather at Portage and Main.
Organizers are calling it one of the largest international demonstrations ever, with marches held simultaneously in more than 20 countries.
Hundreds in Winnipeg began the day at Portage Place mall before marching to Portage Avenue and Main Street.
“There is not enough room on this poster for all the reasons I’m here”, said Bernice Bissonnette, marching side by side with her two granddaughters.
According to organizers of the women's march, the event was originally sparked by Donald Trump's election to the White House.
"It's of great concern to me some of the positions that he has taken that are going to directly affect women,” said Theresa Oswald, former Manitoba politician.
More than anything, Aynsley Dunford-Verrill said Saturday is an event she hopes her two daughters draw inspiration from,
"I think it is really important to me that the girls feel like their voices can be heard and that they can be a part of this."
In Pictures: Winnipeg Women's March
In Montreal, more than 1,000 people are gathering ahead of the start of the city's march.
Some are wearing pink knit hats and have painted whiskers on their faces, and carry signs with slogans such as "women's rights are human rights."
Many of the Montreal protesters say they are there to send a message that Trump-style politics, which they see as misogynist and divisive, are not welcome in Canada.
Thousands of people came out to the march outside the Ontario legislature in Toronto.
Cleo Corcoran, 87, held up a sign reading: "I did the 50s, we are not going back."
"Women are half the population and yet we are so often pushed to the back of the crowd," Corcoran said. "Now we've got to come in front."
Demonstrations have been planned in every major Canadian city as well as many smaller centres. Organizers say 30 events in all have been organized across Canada, including Ottawa and Vancouver.
Officials in Washington say 500,000 people are expected to turn out for the march in the U.S. capital.
Roughly 600 Canadian travellers, most of them women, made the overnight trek on chartered buses from Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Windsor, Ont., to participate in that march.
There are also hundreds of protest marches organized in more than 30 other countries.
During last year's presidential campaign there were accusations of sexual misconduct against President Donald Trump, while he came under attack from those who felt some of his comments toward women were disrespectful.
- With files from CTV Winnipeg's Emad Agahi