When two RCMP officers entered the 7-Eleven on Burrard Avenue in Vanderhoof recently, Ada Madam’s teenage daughters initially felt uneasy.
A short while later, though, they were erupting in laughter, as the officers started to dance - at their mother’s request. The dance video has since received more than 10,000 views on Facebook.
“There is some good-hearted RCMP out there, and I appreciate these men sharing that—displaying that kindness and wanting to spread some joy,” Madam said.
The Wet’suwet’en and Dakelh family had made a stop at 7-Eleven for dinner around 10 p.m. Aug. 30 after a heavy-hearted day of fishing to mark the one-year passing of Madam’s father.
Madam was waiting in the vehicle eating a sandwich and waiting for her daughters, aged 16 and 17, when she noticed the police pull up. She, too, was apprehensive.
“I seen them go inside, and I could see my children stiffen right up when they had seen the police,” Madam said, describing the intergenerational trauma passed down throughout Indigenous families, including her own.
“I didn’t like seeing my girls get that scared because they are very good children.”
When the girls came out, Madam said her oldest, who has graduated and will be attending the University of Northern British Columbia, told her how fearful she was.
“You could hear it in her voice, and I was like this is not right,” she said. ”This isn’t how we should feel every time we see a police officer.”
As the officers exited the convenience store, Madam asked them if they had a minute and could dance to a song from her phone.
She told them it is not just her family - but almost everyone she knows - that gets scared when they see the RCMP.
“We just need some good in our lives right now,” Madam said. “And as soon as I said that the first officer said ‘yes, I’m down.’”
After he put his food in his vehicle, the other officer joined him.
Madam said you could tell they were a bit hesitant stepping out of their comfort zone, but their dance moves lightened all of their moods.
Her daughters laughed, and their friends have asked how their mom could get the officers to dance.
Madam said she hopes in this ‘crazy, unprecedented time’ that everyone keeps on shining no matter what they are going through and tries to be that light showing love and kindness and spreading joy wherever they are, whenever they can.
“I’m just glad it’s making everybody’s day on Facebook,” she said.