NEWS

Laureen Harper interrupted by Toronto activist at cat video festival

04/18/2014 12:14 EDT | Updated 06/18/2014 05:59 EDT
Prime Minister Stephen Harper's wife, Laureen Harper, was briefly interrupted during her speech at TIFF Bell Lightbox last night after a university activist demanded she take a stance on a subject she considered to be much more serious.

She was just beginning her brief remarks ahead of Just for Cats: Internet Cat Video Festival when 21-year-old student activist Hailey King began shouting from the crowd.

“Raising awareness about cat welfare is a good look for your husband’s upcoming campaign strategy," King said as security rushed over to escort her from the building. "Don’t you think supporting government action on missing and murdered indigenous women in this country would be a better look?”  

Harper, who initially attempted to dismiss King's comments by speaking over her, did stop to address the young women directly.

“We’re raising money for animals tonight. If you’d like to donate to animals, we’d love to take your money," Harper said. "That’s [missing women] a great cause, perhaps another night. Tonight we’re here for homeless cats.”

On Twitter afterwards, King tweeted that she thought Harper had "reacted rather rudely to me."

"Speak the truth even if our voice shakes right? My voice was shaking haha," King wrote on Twitter.

Harper is a cat foster mom and volunteers for the Humane Society.

Funds from this, the first ever-festival in Canada, went towards support for the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies.

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