For stories from outside Ontario or relevant to Canada as a whole
a pamphlet from Common Cause Hamilton
You have most likely heard of the Idle No More movement that has sprung up across Canada recently. The most publicized element is that Chief Theresa Spence (of the Attawapiskat Nation) is on a hunger strike until Stephen Harper meets with her and other Indigenous leaders. What gets lost in the news cycle is that this meeting is supposed to be a real discussion and not just a symbolic gesture.
This movement is not just about getting individual leaders into a room and talking: the demands for autonomy for all Indigenous nations are what this movement is about, and this movement is resisting corporate destruction of the environment, at the same time. These issues affect white workers and immigrants (old and new), so supporting the Idle No More (INM) movement is also supporting all communities and future generations.
By: Eric Jacobs
On October 31, 2012, Parliament voted to approve Bill C-309, an amendment to Section 65 of the Canadian Criminal Code also known as the Preventing Persons from Concealing Their Identity during Riots and Unlawful Assemblies Act. Following a formal rubber-stamping by the Senate, this bill will establish two new criminal offences, each with alarmingly harsh sentencing provisions. Once Bill C-309 becomes law, individuals charged with wearing a mask or other disguise while participating in a riot (defined as “an unlawful assembly that has begun to disturb the peace tumultuously”) will face an indictable offence carrying a maximum sentence of ten years; those charged with concealing their identity while participating in an unlawful assembly could face either an indictable offence—carrying a maximum sentence of five years—or a less serious summary offence. The crime of rioting currently carries a maximum two year sentence, whereas participation in an unlawful assembly is a basic summary offence.
By: Bruce Darden
It is the fall, and the beginning of the hockey season for many of us in Ontario. All of the attention is squarely focused on the NHL and its once per decade work stoppage. All across the province, people can be heard talking about how greedy the owners are or why can’t the players be happy to get an average-Joe’s wage. The problem is that the NHL lockout should not be what we, hockey fans, should be talking about.
Its history, Combative unionism and anarchist involvement
Since the start of the Quebec student general strike, members of the Prairie Struggle Organization along with the collaboration of Common Cause, Union Communist Libertaire and the IWW, have been in the process of putting together a cross-Canada speaking tour on the Quebec student general strike. This strike, which has demonstrated once more the power of mass, combative and democratic social movements, is something that does not come often in Canadian history and expresses politics and strategies that are greatly needed in the rest of Canada. The struggles, and organizational principles demonstrated in this strike are examples that anarchists across Canada should aim to share and educate ourselves on, as our comrades in Quebec have done, due to the fact that its core principles are in fact close to our principles.
By Kelly Pflug-Back
Editor's Note: On July 19, Kelly Pflug-Back was sentenced to 11 months, plus time served, for her participation in the Toronto G20 counter-summit demonstrations. Kelly is an amazing organizer, writer, poet, musician and comrade.
Please write to Kelly at:
Vanier Centre for Women
P.O. Box 1040
655 Martin Street
L9T 5E6 Canada
June 27, 2010, was uncharacteristically overcast for mid-summer Toronto. My head pounded from the humidity as I walked alone down Queen Street, through a cityscape teeming with riot police, and still dusted with shards of broken glass from the day before. Construction crews had already set to work repairing the trail of wreckage, attempting to get everything back to normal before anyone noticed.
Recent correspondence from Ken Georgetti (President of the Canada Labour Congress) and Michel Arsenault of the FTQ (Provincial Labour Central of Quebec) and various officers in the broader Anglophone Labour Movement sends a clear message: labour jurisdiction trumps labour solidarity. Georgetti and Arsenault believe that this is the time to “facilitate a settlement instead of fueling fires”.
Aresenault wrote to Georgetti on May 28th, saying that the “radical wings” are not to be “promoted” in order to facilitate an agreement. It seem that to him, an agreement in itself is more important than a victory for the students and workers of Quebec. The message is clear, class peace at all costs. He says the students are tired and have been fighting a long time as a reason why they should not be supported. This is pathetic.
By Peter Marin
Early on the student strike in Quebec adopted the slogan “it is a student strike, and a popular struggle” (in French, “la grève est étudiante, la lutte est populaire"). Over the course of this unprecedented strike, the slogan has become a reality, as people from all sectors of society have joined the students in opposition to the neoliberal government of Jean Charest and his Liberal party.
In this excellent May Day report from Montreal, video journalist Zach Ruiter comes away with some great footage (and great bruises) from his recent trip to Quebec. As the historic student strike stretches on into its third month, the police repression is intensifying.
Republished from The Dominion.
It’s a Student Strike, a People’s Struggle
Statement by CLASSE
Translated by Richard Fidler
Hike in tuition fees is part of “the cultural revolution”
For several weeks now a student revolt has shaken the neoliberal consensus imposed for many years by the Quebec and Canadian governments. It was sparked by the announcement of a new, 75 per cent increase in university tuition fees.
The following is a translation of the lead story in the Ultimatum, the newspaper of the Quebec student union CLASSE, the 80,000 strong and leading student union behind the current student strike in Quebec. In response to a Quebec government that continues to ignore the strike, it calls for a week of direct actions aimed at disrupting economic and government activity.
The original article in French was written by Julien Royal and can be read here
Translated by Linchpin.ca
March 22, the beginning of a long fight
March 22nd is often seen as the climax of our strike. With more than 300,000 strikers and a massive demonstration, we can for sure say that March 22 is of crucial importance. Nevertheless this day is not the last chapter in our struggle. On the contrary, March 22 is the catalyst of a long fight against the government.