VIDEO: ‘WHO k i l l e d CANADA?’

December 10, 2008

Canadians who prefer truth over propaganda — and would like to have an idea why we are in this current crisis — should view this short, compelling, very informative video.  This is info that you won’t see anywhere in our mainstream media.   It is incumbent upon each and every one of us to be fully informed and inform your friends, family, neighbours, community. Ignorance is not an excuse!

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=8632069635967998175

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Toronto: Housing Not War Musical Protest at Moss Park, Sept. 20th

September 15, 2008

***FREE MEAL***MUSIC***

12:30PM | Saturday, September 20 @ Moss Park (Sherbourne & Shuter)

FEATURING: Faith Nolan, Sara Marlowe, The PARC Drummers, Mohammad Ali
…hip hop, blues/jazz, folk & more (check web updates)…

[NOTE regarding recent permit issue in news media: this event will proceed as planned!]

REPLACE THE MOSS PARK ARMOURY WITH HOUSING!

The Moss Park Armoury sits in one of Canada’s poorest neighbourhoods, surrounded by Toronto’s highest concentration of homeless people. The government trains 800 soldiers every month in the armoury while people outside die without food and shelter! The Moss Park Armoury should be replaced with decent, accessible, affordable housing!

Join us for a free meal, music, demonstration and march on the armoury!

*FREE MEAL*
*CHILD CARE AVAILABLE AT EVENT*
(please let us know ahead of time if possible)

For more info, or for accessibility needs, contact TDRC:

TORONTO DISASTER RELIEF COMMITTEE (TDRC)
416-599-8372 |
housingnotwar@tdrc.net | www.HousingNotWar.ca


Toronto: Housing Not War FUNDRAISER CONCERT! (May 31)

May 17, 2008

Toronto Disaster Relief Committee (TDRC) needs resources to continue mobilizing pressure on our government to act for peace and justice. Our communities (activists, allies and those we fight for) also need to have FUN once in a while. The solution? A Housing Not War fundraiser concert – with many of the tickets to be donated to homeless and low-income people!
*See event details below*

On Saturday, May 31, come out for a night of great music and great company in Toronto AND/OR contribute by buying tickets for those who can’t! Just let us know whether the tickets you’re purchasing are for you, or for TDRC to provide to people we’re fighting for. Whether you’re joining us that night or giving someone else with the opportunity to do so, you’ll provide crucial support for TDRC’s non-profit advocacy work.

Thanks, and hope to see you on the 31st!

To purchase tickets, get more info, or support the event in some other way (eg. donating raffle prizes) contact the TDRC office:
416-599-8372 | housingnotwar@tdrc.net

***

TDRC Housing Not War FUNDRAISER CONCERT

TIME/DATE: 9pm – Saturday, May 31, 2008
LOCATION: Cecil Street Community Centre, downtown Toronto (58 Cecil St. – one block south of College @ Spadina)
TICKETS: $10 advance / $15 at the door

FEATURING: Gravity Wave (dance/pop), Sara Marlowe (folk), Mohammad Ali (spoken word/hip hop), Marnie Niemi (bluegrass) AND MORE!

*VENUE IS WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE* For any accessibility concerns contact TDRC and we will try to make arrangements.
*CHILDCARE IS AVAILABLE!* To arrange for (on-site) childcare during the event, please contact TDRC.
*BUY TICKETS FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T!* Individuals and organizations are buying special tickets to be donated to homeless and low-income individuals. Let us know whether the tickets you’re purchasing are for you or for TDRC to provide to others.

Download the event posters (please distribute!):
Poster #1:
http://tdrc.net/uploads/HNW/HNW_May31concert_poster1.pdf
Poster #2:
http://tdrc.net/uploads/HNW/HNW_May31concert_poster2.pdf

To purchase tickets, get more info, or support the event in some other way (eg. donating raffle prizes) contact the TDRC office:
416-599-8372 | housingnotwar@tdrc.net


Ontario Coalition for Social Justice: News and events

May 7, 2008

With the growing gap between rich and poor is in the news again, the upcoming Ontario Coalition for Social Justice (OCSJ) assembly and the meetings of allies in other coalitions are timely! If you live in GTA, southern Ontario or the Ottawa area, please look for an event nearby to attend. Be sure to check out the news, updates and calendar below:


1) OCSJ ASSEMBLY

Please join us, if you are able to do so, to plan how we shall advocate that Ontario embrace economic security, rather than allow poverty to continue!

FROM POVERTY TO ECONOMIC SECURITY
A Forum to Reduce Poverty in Ontario

Saturday, May 10, 10 am – 4 pm — at Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St, Toronto (south of College St — 2 blocks west of the College stop on University subway)

* Recommend ways to reduce poverty and increase social justice
* Organize to increase our power
* Free university and child care
* Recognize the rights of the First Nations
* Learn about the Provincial Government’s plans for poverty reduction
* Mobilize for public input into the process
* Organize among workers, tenants, women, students, and others
dedicated to ending poverty in Ontario

Special Guests:

* Wayne Samuelson (President) and Terry Downey (Executive VP), Ontario
Federation of Labour
* Jen Hassum (Chair), Canadian Federation of Students – Ontario
* Denise Stonefish (Grand Chief), Association of Iroquois & Allied
Indians
* Cheri DiNovo (MPP), Parkdale-High Park
* Representative of the Provincial Government’s Cabinet Committee for
Poverty Reduction (invited)

Open at no cost to all activists interested in social justice – aboriginals, ethno-racial persons, immigrants and refugees, labour activists, persons with disabilities, students, women, and other
equity-seeking persons.

Agenda:

10:00 a.m. Opening & welcome

10:15 a.m. Co-operating among sectors to end poverty:

*Aboriginals: Grand Chief Denise Stonefish
*Labour Wayne Samuelson
*Colour of Poverty Representative of its Steering Committee
*Students Jen Hassum,

10:45 a.m. Break

11:00 a.m. OCSJ recommendations & strategy to end poverty

12:00 p.m. LUNCH & networking

1:00 p.m. OCSJ report & steering committee election

1:15 p.m. Ontario Poverty Reduction:

*Government spokesperson [invited]
*Opposition spokesperson Cheri DiNovo, MPP (Parkdale-High Park)

2:00 p.m. How we deliver OCSJ strategy & co-operate with allies

3:30 p.m. Conclusion

For info, contact John Argue, OCSJ Coordinator (416) 441-3714 info@ocsj.ca


2) ONTARIO GOVERNMENT & POVERTY

The Ontario Government has not announced its entire consultation schedule, but it did say last week that the Cabinet Committee chaired by Deb Matthews will meet people in 3 communities next week to talk about poverty reduction. The Toronto Star’s Kerry Gillespie also reported that the committee will visit Hamilton, Kingston, and Toronto, but there are no dates yet for those roundtable meetings.

a) Peterborough – May 5

Today, from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m., a government roundtable will take place at Evinrude Arena’s Multi-purpose room. It is not clear who has been invited there.

Outside the arena, however, anti-poverty activists and local CUPE members are leading community and union demands that the Government “Raise the rates!” for persons who receive financial assistance, but not enough to meet their costs.

b) Northumberland – May 6

There’s no obvious public information about where this meeting will be, nor who has been invited. However, community members are frustrated that the Northumberland Coalition Against Poverty asked to participate, but was refused permission.

c) SPNO conference – May 7 & 8

The third meeting relevant to the public discussion of what should be done to end poverty will be the annual conference of Social Planning Councils in Ontario, and Deb Matthews has been invited to discuss her committee’s plans with the conference delegates. At least, with this meeting, the SPNO will inform the public off what had been discussed there, and how prepared the Minister is to make future roundtables open to the public.


3) LABOUR & COMMUNITY CONCERNS ABOUT POVERTY

***25 in 5 Network

The day after the Government announced that Deb Matthews will participate in the above 3 meetings, a number of representatives of groups participating in the 25 in 5 network met and issued a media release to emphasize that:

· The Government focus on all persons who live in poverty.
· Meetings be open and accessible to the public, and especially those who
are live in poverty.
· Consultations be properly funded and resourced.
· Consultations be recorded and these reports be made public in a timely
manner.

This media release and the results of other discussions by groups in the 25 in 5 network are available at http://www.25in5.ca/ .

***Racialization of Poverty

The Colour of Poverty campaign hosted a well-attended forum at Ryerson University to discuss and develop further how to collaborate on ways, tools and strategies for people to work toward equity and inclusion in Ontario. Fact sheets about this campaign are available at
http://www.colourofpoverty.ca/ .

***Aboriginal rights

The Ontario Premier and the Minister of Northern Development & Mines, Michael Gravelle, MPP (Thunder Bay-Superior North), have both said that Ontario’s aboriginals will be consulted about mining companies staking claims on “Crown land”, also claimed by aboriginal bands, because the century-old, provincial Mining Act offers clear protection to mining companies but neglects to affirm the rights of aboriginals. In the meantime, however, aboriginals remain imprisoned, merely for stating that they do have claims on land where mining companies are proceeding with
their “rights”.

***People with Disabilities

The Ontario Government has stressed that it’s concerned with child poverty as a priority in developing its poverty reduction strategy, but it’s not yet clear how the needs of persons who live with disabilities, and are challenged by poverty, will be assisted.

***Unorganized workers

The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) has worked with part-time college instructors to advocate that they have the right to be represented by a union in bargaining with their employers. The success of this campaign was recognized finally at a lobby day at Queen’s Park for these workers a week ago, when 14 Liberal MPPs talked to the people who turned out for this lobby and promised that the Ontario Government will introduce legislation this spring to allow them to join a union to help represent their workplace concerns. The workers are pleased, but of course, they remain cautious until they see what form the legislation will take.


4) SOME LOCAL EXAMPLES OF ACTION AGAINST POVERTY

***Chatham

The United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) have been supporting migrant farm workers in southwest Ontario for a number of years, and yesterday there was a local, annual celebration at the centre which the UFCW has provided in Leamington, about its worthwhile support. The Friends of Farmworkers, associated strongly with the Chatham-Kent Coalition for Social Justice, provide important support from the community.

***Guelph

The Guelph-Wellington Coalition for Social Justice will meet with its MPP, Liz Sandals on May 23, and present a paper to her outlining its participant groups’ views about how to end poverty in Guelph region.

***Waterloo

Opportunities Waterloo Region (OWR) is motivating people there to urge Government action by writing local MPPs. OWR has posted links at its website http://www.owr.ca/ to assist residents of the region to send messages to the MPPs that it’s vital for the Government to take serious and immediate action to end poverty.


5) EVENTS

May 7 – 8: The Social Planning Network of Ontario (SPNO)’s regular Spring Conference will be held in Ottawa this year on May 7 and 8 and will focus on a poverty reduction strategy for Ontario. Minister Deb Matthews has accepted an invitation to attend a roundtable discussion there. This year’s SPNO Conference is combined with the 80th anniversary of the Social Planning Council of Ottawa, which will hold a dinner the evening of May 7.

Contact: Dianne Urquhart, Social Planning Council of Ottawa, dianneu@spcottawa.on.ca and (613) 236-9300, or Peter Clutterbuck, at SPNO, pclutterbuck@spno.ca (416) 653-7947 for information.

May 10
: The OCSJ spring assembly and AGM will take place from 10:00 a.m. till 4:00 p.m. in Toronto at the Steelworkers’ Hall at 25 Cecil St., near the Queen’s Park subway stop. For information, contact John Argue at info@ocsj.ca or (416) 441-3714.

May 10
: The London and District Labour Council is hosting a joint activist forum from 10:00 a.m. till 1:00 p.m., in the common room of the Tolpuddle Housing Co-op at 380 Adelaide St. N. The forum title is “Turning globalization around with grass-roots activists”, with a Latin American focus because of concerns in London about what’s happening in Colombia, in particular, and incidentally, the city’s increasing Spanish-speaking population. Information about the forum is available from (519) 645-3108.

May 12
: The Centre for Public Justice is initiating its Envisioning Canada Without Poverty campaign with a workshop in Ottawa at the Bronson Centre’s Rideau Room, 211 Bronson Ave. from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m. Information is available at cpj@cpj.ca and (613) 232-0275.

May 15
: The Council of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA) will be organizing a community forum to brief various community leaders and local ethnic media within the diverse communities in the GTA about the details of C-50 (proposed changes to Immigration and Refugee Protection Act) and its implications and potential impact on all of us. The forum will be held from 6:30 – 9 p.m. at Armadale Community Centre located in Markham (2401 Denison St – close to the intersection on McCowan and Dension – North of Steeles). Please RSVP to rsvp@cassa.on.ca . If organizations would like to become supporters of this event, e-mail neethan.shan@cassa.on.ca .

May 21 – 24:
CUPE Ont. 45th annual convention in Niagara Falls.

May 24
: The Centre for Public Justice’s Envisioning Canada Without Poverty campaign will host a workshop in London at the London District Christian Secondary School, 24 Braesyde Ave. from 10:00 a.m. to 12;30 p.m.

Information is available at cpj@cpj.ca and 1 (800) 667-8046.

May 26 – 30
Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) convention at Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

May 28
The Annual General Meeting of the Lakehead Social Planning Council in Thunder Bay will feature Peter Clutterbuck, SPNO Coordinator, as the guest speaker on the policy framework for a poverty reduction strategy in Ontario.

For information, contact: Marie Klassen, Lakehead SPC, lspc@tbaytel.net or (807) 624-2330

May 29
Assembly of First Nations National Chief Phil Fontaine has called upon all Canadians to support and join First Nations in challenging the Government of Canada to implement lasting solutions based on equality and respect. A peaceful rally will happen in Ottawa, and more information
will follow.

May 31
: The 7th AGM of Fair Vote Canada will take place at Ryerson University in Toronto, 80 Gould St. (at the corner of Church St.), Room RCC204, from 9:15 a.m. till 5:15 p.m. One panel will feature Olivia Chow, NDP M.P., Martha Hall Findlay, Liberal M.P., and Carolyn Law, Green Party of Ontario executive member. Information is available at info@fairvote.ca or (416) 410-4034.

June 10
: The Low-Income Energy Network (LIEN) Annual Conference is taking place from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at Oakham House, Ryerson University, in Toronto. This is a gathering for anti-poverty, affordable housing and environmental advocates to share experiences and engage in an action agenda on low-income energy issues. One of the main themes will be how Ontario’s poverty reduction plan and its long-term affordable housing strategy must both address energy poverty. More information, including registration and agenda, will be available soon, from Zee Bhanji, Coordinator, at bhanjiz@lao.on.ca or Tel: (416) 597-5855 ext. 5167 or 1 (866) 245-4182 x 5167.

John Argue, Co-ordinator
Ontario Coalition for Social Justice
15 Gervais Dr., #305
Toronto, Ont., M3C 1Y8
(416) 441-3714
info@ocsj.ca


Ontario Coalition for Social Justice news and events around the GTA

May 2, 2008

This is the time of year when we all have innumerable things to do and meetings to attend before summer time. The exciting thing about poverty reduction is that so many people and groups are organizing, expressing their concerns, and pushing governments to actually do something to reduce poverty:

1) OCSJ ASSEMBLY MAY 10

FROM POVERTY TO ECONOMIC SECURITY

A Forum to Reduce Poverty in Ontario

Saturday, May 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

at USWA Hall, 25 Cecil St, Toronto

[south of College St., and 2 blocks west of subway stop at College &

University]

Agenda highlights (more info to follow):

• Shine a light on poverty in the province

• Recommend ways to reduce poverty and increase social justice

• Learn about the Provincial Government’s plans for poverty

reduction — with Cheri DiNovo, MPP (Parkdale-High Park) and we have also

invited the Cabinet Committee on Poverty Reduction to send a

representative.

• Mobilize for public input into the process

Open at no cost to all activists interested in social justice — labour,

student, aboriginal, women, ethno-racial, and other equity-seeking groups

2) ONTARIO GOVERNMENT & POVERTY REDUCTION

Deb Matthews, MPP (London North Centre), as Chair of Ontario’s Cabinet

Committee on Poverty Reduction, is clearly the committee’s public voice in

explaining its intentions about consulting people to develop

recommendations within this year to reduce poverty in the province. The

Minister spoke to very well attended meetings last week which were

organized by the 25 in 5 network and also by ISARC.

It was frustrating for community groups that the Cabinet Committee did not

take advantage of those highly publicized events to announce its

consultation schedule. However, we are assured that the schedule will be

announced soon.

3) LABOUR & COMMUNITY CONCERNS ABOUT POVERTY

**ABORIGINALS

One current dispute between aboriginals in Ontario and authorities in

Government concerns aboriginal land rights and their assumption that

consulting them is an elementary right before a mining company, for

example, uses lands that they claim belong to them.

In northwestern Ontario, the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inniuwig (KI) aboriginals,

and around Sharbot Lake west of Ottawa, the Ardoch Algonquin aboriginals,

are opposing the drilling for minerals on their lands. Yet despite their

peaceful claims, leaders of the bands in each region have been sentenced

to six months in jail because of their public claims. Apparently, both

the Premier and the Ontario Attorney General (AG) have offered the

aboriginal leaders money to fight these disputes legally, but Mr. McGuinty

and Mr. Bryant each claim that they cannot interfere with a court process,

and so cannot order the aboriginal leaders’ release.

**CANADIAN AUTO WORKERS

The Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) are initiating campaign schools to focus

on retaining jobs as part of the union’s campaign to help its members, but

as part of its strong belief that jobs, especially good jobs that offer

benefits to workers too, is one of the best ways to eradicate poverty. As

well, the CAW is encouraging municipalities to adopt a policy to buy

Canadian products for all public purchases as a further means of

protecting jobs in the province.

A series of schools began this past weekend for workers in St.

Catharine’s, Niagara Falls, Welland, Thorold, and Pelham in the Niagara

region, and schools will also be held in Kitchener-Waterloo on May 3, in

Windsor on May 10, and in Oshawa on May 24.

**COLLEGE PART-TIME WORKERS

The organizing by OPSEU staff among 12,500 part-time workers at community

colleges to join the union has been recognized at last by John Milloy, MPP

(Kitchener Centre), Ontario Minister of Training, Colleges, &

Universities. The Minister said yesterday that the government plans to

introduce legislation this spring permitting the workers to gain

bargaining rights.

**COMMUNITY MOBILIZING

##The 25 in 5 forum on poverty reduction on April 14 attracted almost 500

activists who urged the Ontario Government to take serious action now on

reducing poverty. The network’s principles and actions are available at

Toronto’s social planning council website at

##The Interfaith Social Assistance Reform Coalition (ISARC) attracted a

further 100 activists from faith communities to urge the Government to

accomplish the same goal.

ISARC will be consulting local faith groups with whom they work to

organize meetings where people will be able to discuss how faith groups

can contribute to urging government action. Its tour is to be planned for

London, Hamilton, Ottawa, Sault Ste. Marie, and Thunder Bay.

Minister Deb Matthews spoke at each of these forums, and stayed long

enough at each one to hear from a number of diverse activists, including

persons living in poverty, persons receiving each of Ontario Works and

Ontario Disability Support Program income.

##The Social Planning Network of Ontario (SPNO) has been consulting with a

number of communities about co-operative action on urging government

action and will continue to do so in a location to be announced for

talking with Canadian Association of Community Living on April 24, in

Cambridge on April 25, in Cornwall on April 28, and in Ottawa on May 7.

Details, times, and contact information for these meetings can be found at

a new website initiated by the SPNO called Poverty Watch Ontario and

**ENVIRONMENT & WATER

##The Ontario Ministry of the Environment has renewed a permit granting a

unit of Nestle Canada Inc the right to continue extracting up to 3,600,000

litres of groundwater each day near Guelph to then sell as spring water.

This decision raises so many issues, like the token fees paid by a

transnational corporation to profit from water which may be needed by the

increasing population in the Guelph region, that it defies rational

belief! Local concerns can be read at the website of Wellington Water

##A much more positive decision for the health of students and staff at

schools in the Waterloo Region was taken by the District School Board

which has banned the sale of plastic bottles of water in its schools as of

next year.

**IMMIGRANTS / REFUGEES

##There are increasing numbers of unions and community groups which are

expressing their criticisms of the federal government’s proposed

amendments to the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Protection Act as

amounting to giving the Immigration Minister far too much power and

discretion about who and how many persons will be allowed to enter Canada.

The Canadian Arab Federation, the Chinese Canadian National Council, the

union UNITE HERE, and the United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) are some

of the increasing numbers of critics.

One clear event that will attract many people is being organized by No One

Is Illegal for a rally on May 3, cited below in the events section.

##An excellent Federal Tax Court judgment was issued a few days ago in

B.C. whereby the judge criticized the widespread exploitation of migrant

agricultural workers as reminiscent of scenes from author John Steinbeck’s

The Grapes of Wrath. The determined work by the United Food & Commercial

Workers (UFCW) across the country, including in both Ontario and B.C., and

also the community activists from Justicia 4 Migrant Workers, will be able

to rely on this judgment for their advocacy for migrant workers from now

forwards.

4) POVERTY: FOCUS OF COMMITTEE OF PARLIAMENT

Parliament’s HUMA Committee (Human Resources and Social Development) has

begun its study on a poverty plan for Canada. The committee plans 3 or 4

meetings to discuss an overview of poverty in Canada; 2 to 4 meetings to

compare poverty in Canada with that in countries like the U.K. and

Ireland, from which Canada may learn ideas which could be used here; and 6

to 10 meetings to discuss how the federal government can contribute to a

poverty reduction strategy in Canada.

To ask to appear, or to learn about submitting a written brief, contact

HUMA Committee clerk Jacques Mazaide, Room 6-37, 131 Queen Street, House

of Commons, Ottawa, Ont K1A 0A6, Tel: (613) 996-1542, Fax: (613) 992-1962,

or E-mail: HUMA@parl.gc.ca

An active M.P. from Ontario on the committee is Tony Martin, M.P. (Sault

Ste. Marie) assisted by Rick Prashaw, Tony’s Legislative Assistant,

available at MartiTo0@parl.gc.ca Information about the hearings is

available on Tony’s website

5) FAIR VOTE IN ONTARIO

The numerous supporters of a fairer voting system for Ontario, and for

other provinces, as well as for the federal level of government, are

rejuvenating the campaign in Ontario to stimulate public awareness of the

need for changing or reforming the voting system. Activists in Fair Vote

Ontario are interested in discussing their concerns in meetings and events

and are planning now to organize a major public forum next autumn to

highlight what is needed to be done to achieve change.

Information about these concerns, and also how to join others in your

neighbourhood to learn about and to support change, is available at

6) EVENTS

May 3

The Toronto & York Region Labour Council and its Equity Committee

is hosting the sixth Workers of Colour and Aboriginal Workers’ conference.

It starts at 9:00 a.m., costs $40 including lunch, and takes place at the

OFL building, 15 Gervais Dr. For information, contact Ana Fonseca at

afonseca@labourcouncil.ca or at (416) 441-3663 x221.

May 3

No One Is Illegal is organizing a rally at 12:00 p.m. at Christie

Pits Park, across from the Christie subway stop in Toronto, to protest

unfair deportations of immigrants and refugees to Canada.

May 10 The OCSJ spring assembly and AGM will take place from 10:00 a.m.

till 4:00 p.m. in Toronto at the Steelworkers’ Hall at 25 Cecil St., near

the Queen’s Park subway stop. For information, contact John Argue at

info@ocsj.ca or (416) 441-3714.

May 10

The London and District Labour Council is hosting a joint activist

forum from 10:00 a.m. till 1:00 p.m., in the common room of the Tolpuddle

Housing Co-op at 380 Adelaide St. N. The forum title is “Turning

globalization around with grass-roots activists”, with a Latin American

focus because of concerns in London about what’s happening in Colombia, in

particular, and incidentally, the city’s increasing Spanish-speaking

population. Information about the forum is available from (519) 645-3108.

John Argue, Co-ordinator

Ontario Coalition for Social Justice

15 Gervais Dr., #305

Toronto, Ont., M3C 1Y8

(416) 441-3714


Two Important Upcoming Events, April 9 & 12…

April 7, 2008

There are two important upcoming events in Toronto this week:

————————————————————————–
1. Event at Ryerson: Land Rights Not Mining Rights
2. CAIA Fundraiser in Support of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
————————————————————————–
LAND RIGHTS NOT MINING RIGHTS
FREE ROBERT LOVELACE AND THE KI 6
DATE: Wednesday April 9th, 6 pm
PLACE: Ryerson Student’s Union, 55 Gould St (between Victoria and Church)
INFO: www.ryerson.ca/socialjustice
Featuring: Ovide Mercredi, former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, and members of the KI and Ardoch First Nations.

In a travesty of justice and a grave assault on Aboriginal rights, seven
Aboriginal leaders are in jail today for upholding indigenous and Canadian
law. In March, Robert Lovelace from Ardoch and Chief Donny Morris of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) community, four councillors and one community member were jailed for six months for contempt of court. In two separate cases, they refused mining exploration on their traditional lands without their permission. Additionally, Robert Lovelace and his community have been hit with huge fines.

These Aboriginal leaders were not only protecting indigenous laws, they
were also protecting the Canadian constitution as interpreted by the
Supreme Court of Canada, which says that governments must consult with Aboriginal Nations before licensing mining exploration on their lands.

The KI Six arguments that the Ontario government has a constitutional
responsibility to consult with them before issuing a mining permit in
their traditional territories were rejected by the court. The judge in the Ardoch case threw out Robert Lovelace’s testimony that he was defending Algonquin Law and responsibilities with respect to human activity in their territory.

“I’m prepared to go to jail for my belief in the land,” said KI Chief Donny Morris. “This is a land issue based on our sovereignty and I’m prepared to give myself up if the court decides I’ve disrespected the November ruling to allow Platinex on our land…”

They should not have to go to jail! Premier Dalton McGuinty should withdraw the licenses issued to these mining companies and free Robert Lovelace and the KI 6. The jailing of these leaders is causing terrible suffering and fear in their communities. KI is a remote northern community that has just lost the majority of its leadership and the Ardoch community is facing fines of $50,000. These leaders are also in jail because their communities are poor and cannot afford fines.

“The message delivered through this court decision is one of domination
and oppression,” said Chief Paula Sherman of the Ardoch decision.

Support the right of a community to say NO to mineral exploration and
mining projects that threaten the health of people and ecosystems. Replace the antiquated ‘free entry’ system of mining and exploration with a process that grants exploration permits only after consultation with affected First Nations communities, and consideration of competing land uses and values.

Join us to show support for the Ardoch and KI communities, to protest these harsh court decisions, and to demand action from Premier Dalton McGuinty.

Co-sponsors include:

Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation
Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
CAW Sam Gindin Chair in Social Justice and Democracy, Ryerson University
Ryerson Students’ Union
Mamow Sha-way-gi-kay-win North-South Partnership for Children

Ryerson Aboriginal Students Services
Christian Peacemaker Teams Canda
CPAWS Wildlands League
Indigenous Environmental Network
Mining Watch Canada
OCAP
Laguna Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment
*************Please distribute widely**************************

TURTLE ISLAND TO PALESTINE – FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS!!
CAIA FUNDRAISER IN SUPPORT OF THE ARDOCH ALGONQUIN FIRST NATION
JOIN US FOR A NIGHT OF LIVE CULTURAL PERFORMANCES, GREAT FOOD,
DANCING AND FUN!

*********************************************************
Date: Saturday April 12
Time: 7 pm – Door opens at 6:30

Place: Cervejaria – 842 College St. (W of Ossington), Toronto

Suggested donation: $10
Featuring: LAL, DJ NO CAPITALISTA and others. Silent auction and 50/50 draw
*************************************************************

To coincide with Palestine Political Prisoners Day, the Coalition Against
Israeli Apartheid ( CAIA), is organising a fundraiser in support of the struggle of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation (AAFN )against uranium mining on their land. All proceeds will go to the AAFN On February 15 2008, in a travesty of justice, AAFN Spokesperson Robert Lovelace was sentenced in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Kingston to 6 months incarceration and fines amounting to $25,000 for refusing to comply with an injunction that would prevent him from protesting against uranium mining on land that is part of a 25-year-old Algonquin land claim.. In addition, the community was fined $10,000 and Chief Paula Sherman $15,000. The AAFN and the Shabot Obaadjiwan First Nation started their blockade of the uranium exploration in the area in June 2007.

The highly politicized nature of these sentences further underscores the
on-going criminalization of indigenous people’s basic rights to self-determination and the free use of their lands and resources. Just as
Israel refuses to fulfill its obligations under international law with respect to the basic rights of the Palestinian people (including the incarceration of over 10,000 Palestinian political prisoners), the Canadian government has decisively rejected its obligations under the ‘UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples’ and continues to incarcerate indigenous leaders who defend the basic rights of their peoples to self-determination. Such a right includes the right of indigenous peoples to: “freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development” (Article 3, UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples).

The Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA) is a grassroots Palestine-solidarity organization which understands Israeli apartheid as one element of a system of global apartheid and therefore stands in solidarity with all oppressed groups around the world, in particular, the indigenous peoples of North America.

For more information on this fundraiser or to find out more about CAIA
please email endapartheid@riseup.net or go to www.caiaweb.org


Some climate change and social justice events in Toronto in March and April

February 29, 2008
Calendar of climate change events for March and April, Toronto – compiled by Students Against Climate Change – most (but not all) events are at University of TorontoFrid., Feb. 29 – Science for Peace forum on sustainability and the environment – 1 to 5 p.m. OISE, 252 Bloor St. W. Room: Forum. Details for event: http://scienceforpeace.sa.utoronto.ca/

Fri. Feb. 29 – Faculty of Law symposium on Canadian climate change policy. 12:30 – 2 p.m. Solarium (room FA2), Falconer Hall 84 Queen’s Park. Details: http://www.law.utoronto.ca/visitors_content.asp?itempath=5/5/0/0/0&cType=NewsEvents&specEvents=2631

Mon. Mar. 3 – Action plan to assist Sharbot Lake – Students Against Climate Change – 6 p.m. Rm 5250, OISE, 252 Bloor St. W. New article on the issues: http://www.dominionpaper.ca/articles/1414
* Website for citizen’s inquiry in April: http://www.uraniumcitizensinquiry.com/
Website for community association doing work on the issue: http://www.ccamu.ca/

Monday March 3, 11 a.m. Bloor and Avenue Road (SE corner) ‘Take the Tooker’ Bike Lane Demo. Join supporters of TaketheTooker, a group of Toronto cyclists advocating for a bicycle expressway along Bloor/Danforth, as we unfurl a 3 ft. by 144 ft. bike lane on Bloor! Ride on the lane! For more info, greenspi@web.ca or 647 342 1964 http://www.takethetooker.ca/

Mon. Mar. 3 – Memorial for environmental activist Tooker Gomberg – 7 p.m. at the Friends House on Lowther, 60 Lowther St. The Ten Commandments for Changing the World. http://www.greenspiration.org/environ/articles/TenCommandments.htm
Info. on Tooker and enviro. activism: http://www.greenspiration.org/

Tues. Mar. 4 – Lecture with climate activist, Patrick Bond, author of Climate Change, Carbon Trading and Civil Society. – 7 p.m. OISE, 252 Bloor St. W. Room 2212. Details on event: http://climateandcapitalism.com/?p=333

Tues. Mar. 4 – Transport Revolutions: Moving People and Freight without oil – with Richard Gilbert & Anthony Perl – 7 p.m. OISE, 252 Bloor St. W. Room 5250. Details: http://danforthgreens.ca/transport-revolutions-moving-people-and-freight-without-oil/

Wed. Mar. 5 – Transportation without oil (same talk as above) – 11 a.m. – Sidney Smith Hall, 100 St. George, Room 2125.

Wed. Mar. 5 – Elizabeth May, lecture on international environmental policy – Hart House, Debates Room, 7:30 p.m. Poster: http://www.harthouse.utoronto.ca/userfiles/Elizabeth%20May.pdf

Sat. Mar. 8th – International Women’s Day March. Toronto Committee and Women Working with Immigrant Women. Rally at 11 am (UofT OISE Auditorium, Bloor St. W. & St. George subway) proceeding with the IWD 2008 March at 1 pm through the downtown core and concluding with the IWD 2008 Fair, 3 – 5 pm at Ryerson’s University Student Centre (hosted by the Ryerson Women’s Centre).

Mon. Mar. 10 – talk with Stu Neathy of the Dominion magazine (probably the best alternative media in Canada) – 7 p.m. OISE, room, 252 Bloor St. W., room 5250. Tar sands isse: http://www.dominionpaper.ca/tarsands

May 14 – showing of “Toxic Trespass” on TVO. About lethal toxins in the Windsor, Sarnia air, from trucks and industry, causing high cancer rates there (they are also in Toronto of course, including from U of T’s natural gas smokestack). http://www.nfb.ca/collection/films/fiche/?lg=en&id=54100&v=h

Wed. March 19 – International Mining Day lecture, 6 p.m. Location TBA. Slideshow on Sharbot Lake (with guest speaker), tar sands, and uranium mining in Canada. OISE See: http://www.protestbarrick.net/
* http://www.dominionpaper.ca/topics/mining
* http://www.miningwatch.ca/

March 20 – Thomas Homer Dixon and Ross Gelbspann on climate change – Isabel Theatre. (Sorry, I cannot verify dates or times for this. I heard of it through someone at the UTERN meeting and the Isabel Bade theatre info. line and website is incommunicado today).

March 15 – Anti-war rally (also an environmental event because war is a major contributor to environmental devestation on many levels). Details: http://www.nowar.ca/

March 27 – Free Burma lecture and concert, March 27. Details to be announced.

March 29 – Earth Hour (turn off lights for an hour). http://www.wwf.ca/earthhour/
Urge the U of T administration and students to participate!

April (several dates, TBA) – Citizen’s inquiry into uranium and nuclear energy in four locations outside Toronto. http://uraniumcitizensinquiry.com/media.htm

Students Against Climate Change will organize a ride for students to participate in the hearings

April 20 – Earth Day rally. http://www.torontoclimatecampaign.org/

Additional issues . . .

* Kyoto Plus. This is THE important follow-up on Kyoto to watch for. Community and students groups should endorse it. “Kyotoplus – Stop Global Warming: A Proposal from Greenpeace Canada” If your organization wants to support Kyotolplus send an email to Arthur Sanborn, climate campaigner, Greenpeace Canada at arthur.sandborn@yto.greenpeace.org

* Carbon tax for Canada. What you should know. In Germany the carbon tax currently imposed $900 per tonne; the propsed tax (proposed by industry) is for $10 per tonne to go up to $30 per tonne by 2020. See industry document: http://www.conferenceboard.ca/documents.asp?rnext=2426

* Caravan to end Canadian Involvement in Torture, Toronto-Ottawa, May 1-9, 2008. Join us for a journey through dozens of Ontario communities as we expose and challenge the many ways in which the Canadian government is increasingly involved, both directly and indirectly, in policies and practices that result in the torture of human beings. Sponspored by Homes Not Bombs. See http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/secrettrials.htm

* Support the Mohawks of Tyendinnaga, still fighting theft of and unsustainable development of native land and violently attacked by OPP. Sign the petition to demand all charges against Shawn Brant (who non-violently blocked the 401 to call attention to this injustice) be dropped. Join the Shawn Brant facebook group, or sign petition at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/stoplicensingplunder

In the works (not yet scheduled) from Students Against Climate Change:

* Revolutionary silk screen workshop with Sarah and Txus the activist clowns.

* Ritual to commemorate the loss of biodiversity at the bio-wall, Koffler Centre.

* Showing of the climate change film The 11th Hour, with Student Union (UTSU).

Several events related to social justice and environment from No One is Illegal:
http://toronto.nooneisillegal.org/

Every Thursday at noon – Hot Yam hosts vegan local food lunch, International Centre, $5

Every Wed. 3 to 5, lecture by Prof. Danny Harvey on global warming, Earth Sciences building 1050, U of T. This is class, but several members of the public listen in because Dr. Harvey’s lectures are well presented and accessible.

Apologies for events I missed or wrong information. Please email pyork_2002@hotmail.com to make corrections, if any, or for more information, or call 647-342-7995. See Students Against Climate Change blog: http://studentsagainstclimatechange.blogspot.com/