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Dec 13, 21

Canadian Tire Fire #23: Gidimt’en Calls for Week of Action, Defund the Ottawa Police, Encampment Solidarity Updates

photo: @RisingTideTor

As CGL attempts to move forward with their work on the Yintah, inching ever closer to drilling under Wedzin Kwa, Gidimt’en Checkpoint has called for a week of actions starting December 20th. They’re calling for specific attention to be paid to investors such as RBC, which has already been the target of a concerted and wide-ranging campaign.

In Winnipeg, multiple actions were held against RBC. On December 10th, a group occupied an RBC branch and staged a theatrical demonstration, forcing the branch to close for the day.

Later that day, demonstrators blocked traffic in downtown Winnipeg outside another RBC branch.

In Toronto, around 600 people took to the streets in the financial district. The march made stops at the offices of different investors in the CGL pipeline, including AimCo, RBC, and TD bank. At the TD head office, some demonstrators took over the lobby while some stickered and spray painted their windows.

Also in Toronto, one man dangled himself from a tripod to block the entrance to RBC.

In Collingwood, Ontario, a small solidarity demonstration was held.

We hope to see more solidarity actions over the coming weeks. If you need a reminder that the eviction of CGL still stands, watch this recent video!

Ottawa Activists Hold Sit-In to Demand Police Budget Freeze

On December 8, as the City of Ottawa debated its 2022 budget, about 20 people held a sit-in at City Hall to protest an increase in police funding. Ultimately, a 2% increase from the 2021 budget was approved, amounting to $11.35 million. The amount was pushed down from the $14-million requested by Ottawa Police, largely due to community advocacy and lobbying, according to the Ottawa Citizen.

The action follows one that took place on November 22nd, while the budget was being debated at a Police Services Board meeting. That day, demonstrators blocked an on-ramp to Highway 417, demanding a freeze to the police budget. The group, including members of the Ottawa Black Diaspora Coalition, held their ground against angry motorists for at least six hours. They emphasized demands including a freeze to the budget, re-direction of funds and programming to address issues of sexual violence, mental health, and addictions, and specific supports for Black, Indigenous, and low-income communities. Protesters also expressed their solidarity with land defenders in Wet’suwet’en territories.

Encampment Evictions Continue and An Attack on Eviction Profiteers

Encampment evictions continued this week in cities across so-called Canada including Toronto and Hamilton. As snow began to cover the ground in both cities, there was no respite for those trying to seek shelter in public spaces, as police, municipal workers, and private companies continued to destroy tents, steal belongings, and displace people with nowhere to go.

In Hamilton, an action was taken to strike back against a private company that has been profiting off recent evictions in the city. A communique posted to read in part:

Earlier this week a branch of Quantum Murray Environmental in Stoney Creek, Ontario had several of its windows smashed in the middle of the night. Quantum Murray is a construction company that specialized in dealing with industrial-scale environmental problems and infrastructure, but that has more recently gotten into the business of encampment evictions in Hamilton…

In some recent downtown evictions, as friends and neighbours stood up to the police and tried to stop this inhumane spectacle, we couldn’t help but notice the presence of a company called Quantum Murray that was helping to destroy and dispose of people’s possessions. And while our rage has been mainly focused on the politicians who create these brutal conditions, the police who enforce them, and the cold-hearted neighbours who can only think about property values, we left these altercations feeling a particular anger towards the QM workers who for some unspeakable reason have decided to ally themselves with this cause. While they should be out fixing cooling towers and dealing with industrial waste sites, instead they are here in these parks ripping apart tents and licking cop boots. There is no reason why Quantum Murray, a nation-wide company with no shortage of work, should spend its time attacking poor and working class people. Because that’s what an eviction is. It’s an attack. And so we attack back. We destroy your property, and send you a message that once you saddle up with shitheads of the world you get treated like one.

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A weekly roundup of anarchist and anti-authoritarian news from so-called Canada. Email us at: [email protected]

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