Archive | February, 2016

Statement From Anti Colonial Working Group on The Shooting of Vinnie Ryan

29 Feb

Anti Colonial Working Group condemns the shooting of Vinnie Ryan in Ireland. Our thoughts are with the Ryan family in this hard time as they suffer yet another tragedy at the hands of criminals while once again the police turns a blind eye. This shooting, like the murder of Alan Ryan his brother shows that collusion is alive and well not just in the occupied Six Counties, but also in the freestate. It is quite clear that Vinnie, like his Alan was targeted because of all the positive work that they have done for Irish Republicanism and their community. As such the media, the freestate police, and institutions have blood on their hands.

Another Child Thrown to the wolves

28 Feb

Yesterday I was surprised to get a message from a friend of mine in the short time I was checking my facebook. The message was short and urgent, there was a group home runaway at my friends house. I lit a smoke and headed to my friends house dragging with me max, the dog that I am currently dog sitting for a few days. I arrived at my friends house to see a small malnourished child sitting quietly in the corner while my friend was on the phone with his mom. The child was being shipped from group home to group home due to some minor behaviours that were deemed problematic, nothing most of us didnt do when we were 14 almost 15. It was quite obvious the child was tramatized and he really reminded me of tiny tim from the charles dickens story.

The child left the group home, without a coat in severe cold temperature as a result of having physical force used against him by the staff of the group home; Pioneer Youth Services, known for its young inept under payed staff, as well as rumours of abuse. Since it was quite obvious that the kid was awol and have to return too the group home he prepared himself for this and wanted to go with a police escort since he was physically assaulted. Now as most people know I never call the police, or condone it except in extreme cases like state sanctioned child abuse so the police was called and he was given a lawyers number. After eating several bowls of cereal he crawled on the couch and fell asleep waiting for the police. The Police came and because I was there they acted golden. Despite this they still handcuffed the child and let him spend the night in jail, a place that they referred to as a safe place to spend the night and housing, and that kinda reminded me of the Gardia Immigration pigs in Ireland who took me to cloverhill and refered to it as accomidations, like seriously be fucken honest say we are taking you to jail say those words, acknowledge what the fuck you are doing, dont try to make yourself feel better by using some sort of uphamism. When they put the cuffs on the kid, my friend was really upset and rejected this, the irony being me a social activist am so desensitised to state violence that I dont automatically see anything wrong with putting cuffs on a child and it takes someone elses anger at the issue to make me realise yeah thats kinda really fucked up, someone is running away from abuse and then you put handcuffs on them to take them to so called housing which is really a fucken jail cell, stilll things went well and the police said he would be able to talk about laying charges against the group home staff that assaulted him. Thinking about this for most of last night and today I asked the lawyer if there were any messages , to which there was none I kept thinking about this kid and how many kids in group homes end up on the street forced to fend for themselves and fall into the round crowd just to survive being the play thing of pimps and preditors and other such thing and in my head its kinda really fucxked up, as children should be a nations key resourse and pride being guaranteed the best, not be some sort of commodity of social services where they are only seen within the perametors of quotas and funding worth less then a bloody hamburger.

Later today I hear that the kid was out of jail and that the group home called the lawyer but there was no answer, which is strange as I know for a fact that this lawyers office was open and no call came. He is once again at the mercy of his abusers who know that he told people that he was abused which means that he will have to endure more abuse.

This is what our society has come to, a child ripped from the arms of a loving mother forced to wonder around random doors without a coat seeking shelter and help from whomever he can because our system does not value the life of a child. When children are put in the position where they have to fend for themselves making them open to all sorts of abuses we know that something is broken. I cry not just for this kid but every other kid like him who ends up on the street because we are living in a society where child snatching has become a million dollar industry.

MARCH ON CITY HALL! OPEN NEW EMERGENCY SHELTERS NOW! Wednesday, February 17, 11AM, Queen & Sherbourne Interview With John Clarke of OCAP

9 Feb

Below is a call for action from OCAP as well as a brief interview with John Clarke from OCAP that I did.

TORONTO’S HOMELESS SHELTERS ARE BURSTING AT THE SEAMS

March on City Hall

Wednesday, February 17
Assemble: Queen and Sherbourne, 11.00 AM
Soup Provided

Anyone who tries to find a bed within the Toronto homeless shelter system is fully aware that it is in a crisis of overcrowding. During the week of January 18, OCAP members and allies visited the City warming centres and interfaith Out of the Cold shelters that function as a back up for the overloaded system. We spoke to people using these places and volunteers in them. What we found more than confirmed our worst fears.

People are being packed into spaces that, despite the best efforts of those running them, are unable to meet the need. The facilities are inadequate, the demand for them is too great, and people are being turned away.

OCAP will soon release a report on its findings. Drawing from first hand accounts and empirical evidence, the report aims to challenge the ongoing assault on the health and dignity of those who access the shelter system, and challenge the City to provide desperately needed measures to address the situation. Significantly, the report will provide readers with crucial details as to the grave reality of the shelter crisis in Toronto. Space must be opened and the City’s policy of keeping shelter occupancy at a maximum of 90% enforced. The federal government armouries that have been opened in the past to the homeless must again be made available an emergency measure.

On February 17, we will deliver our report to the politicians at City Hall. Please come out and join us on that day.

1.what is the purpose of the protest on the 17th
Our action on February 17 will involve the release of a report on the conditions in the interfaith out of the cold facilities and warming centres that function as a back up for the Toronto homeless shelters. We will march on City Hall to deliver the report and demand action by the politicians.

2.what is the current conditions of those in poverty in Toronto at the moment

Poverty and homelessness are at crisis levels in Toronto and the homeless shelter system is bursting at the seams

3.what are the conditions of shelters and out of the cold programs
The out of the colds are run by dedicated people but they can’t take in everyone who needs shelter and the facilities they offer are grossly inadequate
4.how has the sams problems on welfare and disability affected people ending up on the streets
SAMS led to delayed cheques and caused people to lose their housing in some cases
5.what can people do to help

When we release the report we will be calling on people to contact the Mayor and demand action to address the shelter crisis
Come out to Queen and Sherbourne at 1.00 AM and be ready to show solidarity with the homeless

City of Kitchener Removes Union Paper From Farmers Market Vendors Stall Due to Political Content

6 Feb

Today we went to the farmers market to distribute Information Update, which is a newspaper created by the Steelworkers Local 1005 that discusses the problems they are facing in their struggle for defence of their pension as well as attempts of US Steel to destroy the Steel Industry. Hundreds of thousands of people are affected by these attacks on the manufacturing sector, including over 20 000 pensioners.

As there is alot of support for this cause several vendors took multiple copies of this issue to leave on their stalls for people to take. About an hour after this a city employee came and returned all copies from the vendors stating that since this is a partisan issue it can’t be distributed at the market. When it was pointed out that this was a newspaper that stated the facts that affect this community and was non-partisan, this response was ignored and when questioned why The Record, which is owned by TorStar which is Liberal affiliated is allowed to be distributed there, we were told that it’s a newspaper. We then pointed out that so was this to which we were told that it was political, we pointed out that vendors should have the right to put whatever they want in their stalls we were told that this was not the case as political material can’t be handed on city property.

After the City worker went inside we followed and noted that vendors were handing out in total ten different papers that were clearly political some papers being totally partisan mouth pieces for the Conservative Party, showing the hypocrisy of these city workers.

This makes it quite clear that the issue is not whether the paper or not was partisan or political, but rather that the politics of the paper represented the interests of the workers and pensioners not in the interest of the bourgeoise and their political party’s. Further more this demonstrates that the city feels it has the right to stop people from discussing and distributing material about issues that affect people criminalizing people’s right to be political. City property is public property and to censor Peoples rights to organize in their own interests is an attack on people’s basic rights to organize and solve the problems that they face, as well as the right to conscience. This can not go unchallenged and as such we will continue to distribute political material of a public nature on public space and in the future we will challenge this criminalization of vendors rights to distribute material at their stalls.

Despite these attacks today we handed out 630 papers in less than two hours with most people being quite sympathetic to the cause of defending the dignity of labour.

32CSM Message read at Bloody Sunday Commemoration held by Anti Colonial Working Group

3 Feb

NO BRITISH JUSTICE IN IRELAND

44 years ago British soldiers deliberately set out to control the growing

support for civil rights in the British occupied 6 counties of Ireland.

The message of the Irish people was getting world attention about the

denial of the rights of the people.

History show us as the marchers made their way into the city from the

Creggan British troops including the infamous Paratroopers had taken up

position and opened fire on the crowd.

The result 13 dead and several injured.

This attack on innocent unarmed people marching for their civil rights,

demonstrates the thinking of the British Government at the time, they

believed they could shoot innocent people and get away with it.

Freedom of expression was denied the people at the point of a gun, the

civil rights movement was exposing this and exposing all the violations

of civil rights and liberties of the Irish people.

44 years later justice for the families of those shot and injured has been

Not one British soldier has been charged with the murder of innocent

The British Government in recent years based on the weight of evidence

against them have been forced to give an apology.

However justice continues to be denied and like all the other violations of

our rights the Irish people are forced to endure it.

Anyone who attempts to raise awareness and concerns about these

violations are labelled anti peace.

Politicians in Stormont upholding British rule in Ireland are paying lip

service to the violation of the rights of their people.

The truth is they can do nothing having accepted the British Governments

position as a precondition to getting into Stormont and reinforcing the

partition of our country.

The reality on the ground and becoming more acceptable across Ireland is

that there is No British Justice in Ireland.

In supporting the families and relatives of those murdered in their quest

The 32 CSM demands the British Government to put their army in the

dock and bring closure to the suffering of these families albeit 44years

We demand that by doing so, the British government will end all other

violations of human rights in Ireland and we demand the British

government will relinquish their illegal claim to part of this proud nation.

In this the centenary to the 1916 rising the 32 CSM acknowledge the

work done at an international level and we ask you to not alone continue

this work but to go the extra mile in demanding your government to cut

links with the British Government whilst that government continues to

usurp the sovereignty of the Irish people and continue to deny that proud

people their democratic rights.

Bloody Sunday 44 years is a striking example of the denial of our rights

to freedom and to our rights for justice.