For years Pivot Legal Society, Sex Workers United Against Violence and the PACE Society have been fighting for the rights of sex workers. That fight led to intervening in the Bedford case at the Supreme Court of Canada in June of 2013, and on December 20th, 2013 the Supreme Court of Canada released their historic decision.
Let me get this straight: the founder and namesake of the Manning Centre presumes to lecture Ottawa’s Parliamentary Press Gallery on a supposed dearth of ethics because one disreputable Conservative Senator was once a member of the exclusive journalistic club and another worked as part of the Fourth Estate?
Preston Manning, the godfather of the Canadian Organized Right who acts as its chief financial matchmaker, teaming politically ambitious young market fundamentalists with well-heeled donors, launched his broadside at the Press Gallery yesterday, purportedly for the sin of having once been the professional home to Senator Mike Duffy.
Here is my (Jessica Bell's) take on the top 10 activist stories of 2013, in no particular order. Let these victories be an antidote to cynicism, hopelessness and apathy. Activism works. Activists win. Looking forward to seeing what's in store for 2014.
1. Greenpeace's Campaign to Free the Arctic 30
A clear diagnosis of the Oil Sands fever variant of Dutch Disease may be just what the doctor ordered to rally Canadian workers in the fight against global warming.
A rapid increase in natural resource investment and revenue usually drives up a nation’s currency. This generally makes other industries less competitive and can greatly weaken a country’s manufacturing base.
There has been yet another violent attack with mass casualties. This was not the act of a lone gunman, or of an armed student rampaging through a school. It was a group of families en route to a wedding that was killed. The town was called Radda -- not in Colorado, not in Connecticut, but in Yemen. The weapon was not an easy-to-obtain semiautomatic weapon, but missiles fired from U.S. drones. On Thursday, Dec. 12, 17 people were killed, mostly civilians. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism has consistently tracked U.S. drone attacks, recently releasing a report on the six months following President Barack Obama’s major address on drone warfare before the National Defense University (NDU) last May. There has been yet another violent attack with mass casualties. It was a group of families en route to a wedding who were killed -- in Yemen.
On this week’s Talking Radical Radio, lead organizer Scott Jackson of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) District 78, talks about how his union, historically based in large manufacturing workplaces, has responded to changing times by refocusing its organizing energies on smaller and non-traditional workplaces.trr_rpn_dec23-27_2013_jackson_iamaw_district_78.mp3
Last New Year’s eve, rabble published an op-ed I wrote about a relatively new phenomenon called Idle No More. While hopeful about the attention being garnered by the rise in activism, I cautioned that whether “INM leads to increased awareness, a change in policy, or a change in government is an open question.”
A year later, that question can be answered only in part.
No doubt awareness of Indigenous issues has grown. That is an accomplishment in which all those who have participated, through INM or otherwise, can take pride.
The Toronto Star reported yesterday that an estimated 72,000 households remain without power four days after a catastrophic ice storm hit Canada's largest city.
By the time you read this, that 140,000 or so Metropolitan Toronto residents will be in their fifth day without power or heat -- many of them seniors and other vulnerable people trapped in high-rise apartments without food or adequate ways to keep themselves warm.
At one point, 300,000 Toronto-area homes were without electricity.