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NEWS: Barlow backs Peaceful Direct Action Coalition in Comox Valley, tonight

Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow is speaking against the Raven coal mine on Vancouver Island and in support of peaceful direct action this evening in Courtenay, British Columbia.

Postmedia News/ the Comox Valley Echo reports, “(The Peaceful Direct Action Coalition in Comox Valley) is sponsoring a two day event on Friday and Saturday, the 23rd and 24th of September. The Friday evening event is a Town Hall Meeting at Isfeld Secondary School featuring two of Canada’s most renowned civil society activists. …Maude Barlow is a founder and Honourary National Chair of the Council of Canadians. …Leo McGrady, Q.C. is the author of the Civil Disobedience Handbook, which has been the definitive guide to citizens’ rights for the past 15 years. …Both guests will be addressing the long and proud tradition of peaceful direct action in Canada, and encouraging ordinary citizens to fulfill their responsibility to get up and act when governments fail to listen to their citizens.”

Founding members of the coalition include the Comox Valley chapter of the Council of Canadians, Nocoalmine.net, the World Community Development Education Society, Comox Valley Water Watch, the Comox Valley Sierra Club, and Comox Valley CoalWatch.

“The coalition’s main purpose is to educate the Comox Valley public on its rights and responsibilities in relation to peaceful protest and peaceful direct action. Their stated goal is to mobilize hundreds of citizens to relearn that peaceful direct action is a fundamental democratic right, to remember that when governments are ignoring the will of the people, it is the responsibility of citizens to react strongly, collectively and peacefully.”

Yesterday, the Council of Canadians launched Brigette DePape’s report ‘Thinking Outside the Ballot Box: How People Power Can Stop the Harper Agenda and Create Fundamental Change‘. The engaging 24-page report can be read at http://canadians.org/democracy/documents/OTBB-0911.pdf, as well as on the rabble.ca website.

On Monday, Barlow will be speaking at the rally just before the large non-violent civil disobedience action on Parliament Hill calling on the Harper government to stop the destruction of the northern Alberta tar sands. The action will include Indigenous leaders and representatives, including those from communities impacted by tar sands operations, people from across Canada, non-governmental organizations, and labour – notably the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union, the union that represents tar sands workers.

For more on our opposition to the Raven coal mine, please see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=10089. More on our role in the Peaceful Direct Action Coalition can be found at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=9887.