On Saturday, February 16th the 1st annual Kitchener-Waterloo Anarchist Bookfair will be held at the Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work. Taking place on Six Nations of the Grand River territory, the bookfair will welcome anarchists and non-anarchists alike- from seasoned organizers and activists, to those simply curious about anarchism for a day of workshops, presentations, film screenings, info tables, and social events. The bookfair will introduce anarchist ideas, histories and practices, as well as provide a space for more in-depth conversations about the ongoing relevance of anarchism, and its implication for on-the-ground organizing and everyday struggles.
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: Shannon Balla & Ian Stumpf of the We Remember Ashley Smith Campaign
October 19th marked the 5th anniversary of the death of Ashley Smith. She died at age 19 in a segregation cell at the Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener. In the days leading up to her death, despite being on ‘suicide watch’, Ashley’s request for transfer to a psychiatric facility was denied, as was access to her family, lawyer or advocates. On the day she died, Ashley tied a ligature around her neck and, while staff watched from outside her cell, asphyxiated to death.
By: Devin K
With the recent resignation of Dalton McGuinty and the decision to prorogue the Ontario legislature, the future of the Ontario Liberals fight with the teachers’ union may be uncertain. The Premier's decision comes amidst the ongoing dispute with elementary school teachers and Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation (OSSTF), which has lead to the imposition of Bill 115. Cynically named the “Putting Students First Act”, Bill 115 bypasses the collective bargaining process forcing a 2-year wage freeze and ban on strikes, along with a host of other concessions from on the teachers’ union. In the current context of austerity measures being imposed by all levels of government, Bill 115 is part of the now routine use of anti-strike legislation in both the private and public sector.
By: Brentington AuntieFascist
On Tuesday, November 13th Western Lifeline, an anti-choice group based at Western Ontario (UWO), will host a talk with Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth. Woodworth is infamous for his hardline, anti-choice views on abortion.
By: Ann Beatty
On September 15, hundreds of women, trans people, kids and men supporters gathered in the Parkdale neighbourhood of Toronto for the 30th annual Take Back the Night (TBTN) community fair, rally and march. The march was loud and spirited, marching on both major streets and quieter residential ones. The chants and music brought some residents out on to the sidewalks and waves from balconies of the many apartment buildings in the neighbourhood.