Hundreds of people are expected to march in Vancouver this Saturday to celebrate the role of science in our lives and support evidence-based government policy.
Communications officer Kristina Charania says the idea for the march started in January in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration deleting nearly all mentions of climate change off the White House website. Climate change received fairly high billing on the website under President Barack Obama, but it was not listed among the top issues for the Trump White House and the old page was deleted as soon as Trump was inaugurated.
“A lot of people were concerned and upset about it,” said Charania.
The movement grew into a Facebook page that now has more than half a million followers.
Charania says in addition to concerns around Trump administration policies, the march is a reminder about the policies of the Canadian Conservative government under Stephen Harper and the criticism it faced for its strained relationship with the scientific community.
“We really want to advocate for accessible, open and inclusive science in our community,” Charania said. “We want to encourage people to stand up for what they believe in, which in this case means, supporting evidence-based policies and making sure science is inclusive and diverse.”
Charania says there are 425 satellite marches in 30 countries getting organized around the world, including the main one in Washington, DC.
Its website claims, “The March for Science is a celebration of science. It’s not only about scientists and politicians; it is about the very real role that science plays in each of our lives and the need to respect and encourage research that gives us insight into the world. ”
The Vancouver march will start at 10 a.m. at the plaza outside Queen Elizabeth Theatre and march all the way to Science World and Creekside Park, where a series of speakers, including local scientists and science communicators, will address the crowd.
For more on the Vancouver march, go here.