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WIN! London city council votes 10-5 to opt out of CETA

The London Free Press reports this evening, “Following a heated debate Tuesday at city council, with a raucous gallery packing the chambers, city politicians sent a message to Ottawa they want no part of the looming Canadian-European free trade deal… The motion for London to opt out was put forward by Coun. Nancy Branscombe, who said, ‘The impact of this is very serious for us.’ …Opponents of the deal fear cities may lose authority on what they buy and from whom, and the ability to buy local if they choose.”

The article adds, “Mayor Joe Fontana and councillors Harold Usher, Steve Orser, Denise Brown and Paul Van Meerbergen voted for the city to be included in the trade deal.”

The Council of Canadians
The London chapter of the Council of Canadians was at City Hall this evening and has been active in pushing for this resolution.

And Council of Canadians trade campaigner Stuart Trew notes, “Last week, Maude Barlow, chair of the Council of Canadians, sent London’s mayor and all councillors a letter of support for the opt-out motion, explaining how CETA’s procurement rules are quite different from existing commitments under the Agreement on Internal Trade. The letter also raised flags about the lack of protection for future municipal services or policies that run afoul of CETA investment rules.” To read Trew’s blog, please go to http://canadians.org/blog/?p=14902.

Trew has also written, “Nearly 60 cities, towns and school boards have called for more information on the negotiations and a say in the outcome. At least 33 have asked to be excluded from CETA altogether to protect their democratic rights to set social policy and spending priorities without fear of corporate challenges.”

To work on your city passing a resolution exempting it from CETA, please use the Council of Canadians’ ‘CETA Tool Kit’ at http://canadians.org/ceta-resolution.