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May. 25, 2022 | Wednesday
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Horse carriage opponents take protest to town hall
At War For Animals Niagara protesters gathered outside Niagara-on-the-Lake’s town hall Monday night. (Dariya Baiguzhiyeva/Niagara Now)

NOTL’s horse carriage protesters say they have a new “political” strategy to reach out to area residents – attending council meetings across Niagara region.

Fewer than a dozen At War For Animals Niagara protesters gathered outside Niagara-on-the-Lake’s town hall Monday night.

Adam Stirr said the group’s plan is eventually to approach other councils that might have a say in banning horse carriages and switching to electric carriages instead.

“With a pending amalgamation, we don’t know what the political landscape is going to look like. So, we’re going to be talking to everyone,” Stirr told The Lake Report. “As far as we know, the council as it exists here might not exist in a year from now.”

“We want to make sure we cover all our bases this way and we’re going to be approaching councils with a presentation, weighing the pros and cons of making the transition to electric carriages,” Stirr said.

Protesters held signs and gave out small brochures, which urged banning horse carriages in NOTL, mentioned Montreal’s prohibition of horse carriages starting in 2020, and listed benefits of using electric carriages.

One woman, who was heading to the council meeting, declined to take a brochure but expressed her support to protesters.

Stirr said transitioning to electric carriages would benefit not only the carriage owners but also the town, tourists and the public.

“Going forward, it’s not always going to be the same,” Stirr said about their demonstrations. “Different things for different meetings. Just to engage with people as they come, capture their interest.”

Lord Mayor Betty Disero said there is no public safety issue in regard to protests being held outside the town hall.

“They feel they have things they want to teach people,” Disero said in an interview. “I’d rather have them here than out in the middle of traffic. So, I think it’s probably a safer place for them.”