Denial of access

Halifax police threaten to arrest journalists covering homeless encampment eviction

Halifax Regional Police threatened to arrest journalists and pushed a CTV video journalist covering the eviction of a homeless encampment. 

CTV journalist Sarah Plowman, Global News journalist Alexa MacLean and Halifax Examiner journalist Zane Woodford were on the steps of a closed public library on Spring Garden Road in downtown Halifax, documenting as Halifax Regional Police officers removed people and temporary shelters from the library lawn on Aug. 18, 2021. 

MacLean and Woodford said on Twitter that police first told them to leave the steps, but they refused. “We stated we are on public property and have a duty to cover. The officer then said as long as we have our credentials we can stay,” wrote MacLean. 

A video taken later shows two police officers pushing Plowman back toward the steps as she films the eviction. “It’s for your safety. Move back please,” an officer can be heard saying in the video, before one of the officers tells her to move back onto the steps and the other threatens to arrest her for obstruction. 

“If you move off those steps, you’re subject to arrest for obstruction,” an officer is heard telling the three reporters in another video