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“I need something to heat my tea on,” he said in reference to the fire, adding that a teepee is “apparently a permanent structure.”

When asked what it would take for him to leave and end the hunger strike, Durocher said there would need to be “convincing legislation passed” by the provincial government to address the issues of suicide in the province.

“Just let us be. We know we’re breaking these bylaws, but who are we hurting?” asked Durocher.

Christopher Merasty from Flying Dust First Nation also walked from the North with Durocher, raising awareness around the suicide epidemic plaguing northern Indigenous communities and the province at large.

“We need our voices in there,” said Merasty, pointing at the nearby Legislative Building.

“We need the provincial government to open their doors and let us in to speak.”

Durocher said Minister for Rural and Remote Health Warren Kaeding had expressed interest in speaking one-on-one. Durocher said he wanted to have more people from affected communities at the table with the minister.

Few police were seen around the park throughout the morning, but Durocher and and Merasty expect they’ll be back.

But throughout the morning, crowds gathered, and supplies of water, bug spray and firewood appeared at the camp.

By mid-afternoon, the Regina Police Service and PCC had not responded to any calls for comment on the protest camp.

alsalloum@postmedia.com

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