Blog

March 15, 2019

Conference photo

The following speaking notes were from my keynote presentation at the Canadian Fair Trade Network Conference held on March 2, 2019 in Ottawa, Ontario.

Congratulations to the Canadian Fair Trade Network on your 7th anniversary. I know you work more at the grassroots level, but since Justin Trudeau has never seen an international trade agreement he doesn’t love, I want to address big trade deals, how they have changed and what we should be demanding. I want to talk about how we can take the values of our movement and bring them into national and international policy.

The purpose of “free” trade

The purpose of trade agreements has fundamentally changed since the post-war Bretton Woods international institutions were established to rebuild a shattered world economy and promote international economic cooperation.

Trade used to be about taking down tariff barriers to the trade in goods and could often be a win-win for all.

March 11, 2019
Photo from the Montreal event “Manifestation contre le racisme et la xénophobie: ici & ailleurs”

We are strong and we are many.

On the International Day for the Elimination of Racism (March 21st) the newly launched Migrant Rights Network (MRN) will be coordinating the first of four cross-country days of action this year to respond to the rise of anti-immigrant protests, racially motivated attacks, and forced displacements as climate change intensifies.

March 11, 2019

The Council of Canadians has a plan that will help get the best outcome for people and planet in this provincial election, all while laying the groundwork for a just transition in Alberta – but we won’t be able to pull it off without you.

If you’ve been having trouble sleeping lately, I don’t blame you. Politics in Alberta feels pretty daunting right now.

But there’s too much at stake to give up. The Council of Canadians has a plan that will help get the best outcome for people and planet in this provincial election, all while laying the groundwork for a just transition in Alberta – but we won’t be able to pull it off without you.

We have seen a 38% spike in hate crimes from the far-right who experts say are likely emboldened by racist rhetoric from the United Conservative Party (UCP), led by Jason Kenney, and even Trump-style fake news and calls to “Make Canada Great Again.”[1]

March 8, 2019

Today, March 8, is International Women’s Day. The Council of Canadians honours the struggles of women around the world for justice and equality.

We celebrate women’s achievements and recognize that as a society, we can still do better.

Across the country, Council of Canadians supporters and chapter activists are joining marches and actions in support of women’s aspirations for a better world.

We are inspired by the many examples of women who, through their solidarity and courage, demonstrate that a better world is possible. Today, and every day, we honour women’s struggles and commit to working collectively to build a better future for us all.

March 8, 2019

Bottled water that smells like "urine," tastes like "old socks" or reeks of "diarrhea."  These were some of the complaints listed in four years' worth of government inspection reports obtained by CBC News.

CBC News noted that the reports revealed that “Dasani, owned by Coca-Cola; Real Canadian natural spring water, owned by Loblaws, one of Canada's largest grocery-store chains; and Refreshe spring water, from the Safeway grocery chain, are just some of the brands whose water has been hit with complaints over foul smells, tastes or unusually high levels of sulphur.”

Some businesses were found to be bottling water in "filthy conditions." The article notes that “Toronto-area operator Canadian Shield Natural Spring Water was pumping water behind an amusement park with no safety testing facilities, bathroom or hand washing station for employees, one of the inspection reports found.”

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