Two Montreal children who were selling lemonade outside their home to raise funds for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada had SPVM officials try to shut down their kiosk on Saturday, Global News reports.
Ness (11 years old) and Ariel (8 years old) Partouche-Massa set up a kiosk in front of their home in Roxboro on western Montreal Island for the second weekend in a row.
The two children, whose mother Ayana suffers from multiple sclerosis, care about this cause and therefore wanted to raise money by selling lemonade.
Her mother was diagnosed with this degenerative disease in 2020 and has since had to use a walker or wheelchair to get around.
Ness and Ariel raised more than $1,500 thanks to their soda, but on Saturday their initiative was destroyed by SPVM agents.
The two children sometimes used a megaphone to lure customers, but that technique didn’t sit well with a man who began insulting them, threatening to shut down their kiosk and even claiming he would call the police.
A few minutes later, a police officer arrived and asked the mother and her two children to close their kiosk.
“I said to him, ‘Mr. Officer, give me a fine. I’ll pay for it,'” says Ayana Masse, who wanted to enable her children to continue selling her lemonade.
“He said, ‘No, I’m not going to fine you. You think you’re above the law because you’re in a wheelchair,'” claims Ness and Ariel’s mother.
Ms Masse claims the police officer even threatened to arrest her.
“He had one hand on a holster and told me I was being aggressive. I asked him to leave my country but he refused,” she claims, adding that the agent finally left after three hours.
Ayana Masse states that the police officer finally left the crime scene and told the children that they could no longer use her megaphone. The officer reportedly threatened to come back and arrest her mother.
The SPVM does not wish to comment on this intervention and reiterates that it was necessary to further analyze this story before making any comment.
The mother of the two children, for her part, demands an apology from the police.
On Sunday, Ness and Ariel were back outside their house selling lemonade, but without their megaphones. In a single day, they raised another $1,365, benefiting from the solidarity of the community visibly affected by the cause, but also by the incident that took place on Saturday.