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WIN! Victoria passes resolution calling for exemption from CETA

Bharat Chandramouli

Bharat Chandramouli

Victoria chapter activist Bharat Chandramouli reports that Victoria city council passed a resolution calling for an exemption from the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) last night.

The resolution states:

  1. City Council ask the Province of British Columbia for a clear, permanent exemption for the City of Victoria from the Canada-European Union (EU) Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA);
  2. City Council ask the Federal Government to protect the autonomous powers of the City of Victoria – to create local jobs, protect the environment, and provide services and programs as it sees fit – from any restrictions to those powers in the CETA;
  3. City Council ask the Federal Government to further exempt from the CETA any municipality that so requests; and
  4. City Council encourage and support the Federation of Canadian Municipalities in its work with the Federal Government to change the terms of the draft CETA to protect the autonomy of municipal governments.

On October 13, 2011, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow, CUPE BC president Barry O’Neill, and Victoria city councillor Marianne Alto spoke about the threat of a Canada-European Union free trade deal to an audience of 300 people at the University of Victoria, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=11131. Alto was instrumental in the passing of the CETA motion last night. She was also the city councillor who initiated the motion to have Victoria become a blue community last June, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=9405.

Chandramouli was at Victoria city hall for last night’s vote and will be issuing a media release on the win shortly.

Council of Canadians trade camapaigner Stuart Trew has highlighted, “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.”

We will also be present at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities annual convention in Saskatoon this June 1-4 to congratulate the municipalities that have passed resolutions and to encourage more resolutions calling for an exemption from CETA.

For more information on our municipal resolution campaign, go to http://canadians.org/action/2011/CETA-resolution.html.

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