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NEWS: Unions, Council of Canadians back Occupy

The Globe and Mail reports, “Unions are offering their support to the Canadian version of Occupy Wall Street, giving a boost to the nascent movement as activists prepare to begin their own demonstrations against corporate greed and inequality.”

“Canadian Auto Workers, Service Employees International Union, and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada have all endorsed the movement and said some of their members will take to the streets on Saturday. ”

“Canadian Union of Public Employees president Paul Moist said the union hasn’t been formally asked for support, but is working through provincial federations of labour to support the gatherings. …The BC Federation of Labour announced earlier this week it would lend formal support to protesters in Vancouver who plan to convene near the city’s art gallery on Saturday. …Sid Ryan, president of the Ontario Federation of Labour, has encouraged union members to attend the event, but said the OFL won’t send buses or get involved in organizing. ‘We’re very conscious about barging in and saying the labour movement is here and we’re taking over’…We want to be respectful of their decision-making process.'” The Alberta Federation of Labour has also endorsed the Occupy movement.

“Other organizations taking part include the Canadian Peace Alliance and the Council of Canadians.”

The Toronto Star reported earlier today that, “Maryam Adrangi, 25, University of Toronto student who works with Council of Canadians, (says), ‘I think this is a really great opportunity to build and foster a culture of resistance. …I think there’s a lot of things to protest against and I think there are a lot of issues why people are here. Whether it be education and tuition fee hikes, militarization … I think what’s important is that everyone coming together is coming to say there are a lot of things we say ‘no’ to. But we come together to demand a ‘yes’ to one thing, and that’s justice. …For me it’s justice, but who’s to say what it is for 99 per cent of the people? I think (it’s) 99 per cent of people coming together to make various demands. An overarching banner? It’s hard to say. Maybe the overarching banner is that we’re all together and we’re all united. …How can economic justice not be connected to indigenous sovereignty? Not be connected to environmental justice? Not be connected to peace? Not be connected to militarization? Not be connected to colonialism?”

For more on Council of Canadians support for Occupy, please see http://canadians.org/index.html.

The Globe and Mail article is at http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/caw-throws-support-behind-growing-occupy-movement/article2201340/. The Toronto Star article is at http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1070213–voices-from-occupyto-why-they-re-protesting.