It’s been a year since a man who was a known domestic abuser went on a killing rampage that would become the largest in recent Canadian history. To remember the 22 victims, the Nova Scotia Remembers Legacy Society has organized a memorial service, which will be held Sunday, April 18 at 3pm.
You can tune into the broadcast via Facebook Live at home, or attend a physically distanced, outdoor viewing of the broadcast at Victoria Park in Truro (29 Park Road) where the livestream will be shown from the park’s bandstand. “We encourage you to reach out to your neighbors and watch this event together, as we all know that we’re stronger when we’re together,” the Society says on its event page.
(In an update since this story was published, Sunday morning on Instagram, Halifax Needham MLA Lisa Roberts invited people to join her in a moment of silence at The Oval at 3pm. “Nothing fancy, but I just really would like to lock eyes with some people as we remember beautiful people lost to horrific violence,” she posted. “Please feel invited to join me—safely, outside, distanced—this afternoon.”)
Additionally, a government press release sent out this week announced a “confidential, toll-free line is now open to help anyone in need of emotional support as they reflect on the April 2020 tragedy that began in Portapique”—so if you need someone to listen to how you’re feeling, call 1-866-885-6540. The release adds that the line is operating 24 hours a day and includes service for the hearing impaired. “People who call the line will receive professional counselling support and/or a referral to resources in their community,” the release adds.
For more resources on grief and trauma, see here and here—and if your mental health feels in immediate danger, call the Provincial Mental Health Crisis Line toll-free at 1-888-429-8167 or text NSSTRONG to 741741 for a text conversation with a mental health professional.