Victoria councillors join anti-pipeline protest as mayor distances city from their actions
Coun. Ben Isitt (left) joined activists who oppose the Coastal GasLink pipeline at the B.C. legislature Tuesday. (CTV News)
VICTORIA -- Among hundreds of pipeline protesters who descended upon and helped block the doors of B.C.’s legislature Tuesday were two Victoria city councillors.
Long-time councillor Ben Isitt and newcomer Sharmarke Dubow both joined activists who oppose the Coastal GasLink pipeline.
“I was there to show support for the Indigenous leaders and youth who issued a call to action today,” Isitt told CTV News Vancouver Island. “And to act as an observer to make sure everyone was safe.”
Protesters standing in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs against the pipeline in northern B.C. have been present at the legislature for six days.
Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps is now trying to create distance between their actions and official city business.
“I hope that the behaviour of individual councillors does not impact the province's relationship with council as a whole or the city as a whole,” said Helps.
She told CTV News she respects the individual actions of Isitt and Dubow, but reiterated that they are not acting on behalf of the city.
CTV News reached out to Coun. Dubow, who spoke at the massive gathering on the lawn of the legislature, but did not receive a comment on his participation.