It Will Work!
May 1, 2010
The Garrison, 1197 Dundas Street West
Mayworks Festival Closing Party
Following the No One Is Illegal! May Day of Action (1pm. St.Jamestown), celebrate May 1st by shining the spotlight on the struggles, successes and strength of working class peoples, migrants, undocumented and temporary workers, by joining the Mayworks Festival, No One Is Illegal Toronto and the Canadian Labour Congress Ontario Region in presenting musicians, dancers and artists who will ignite the stage with words, musice and movement to provoke thinking as well as dancing and laughter!
Hosted by Deena Ladd of the Workers Action Centre, the line-up includes Deidre DLishus Walton, MataDanZe, Mama D, LAL, Marinda and Solari, Red Slam Collective, Humble The Poet and Amai Kuda!
Tickets: $5-$15 (no one turned away)
This event will be a build up to community and labor organizing resisting the G8/G20 Summits in June 2010.
In the past 6 years the struggle for justice for immigrants and refugees has grown immensely. Inspired by the individual and collective strength of Mohamed Cherfi, Kimberley Lizano-Sossa, Fahim Kayani, Shamim Akhtar, Isabel Garcia, Wendy Maxwell, and the many others that we have known, and the countless others that have had to fight alone, the Migrant Justice movement has fore fronted struggles of people of color, women, disAbled and queer migrants, particularly those without full status.
Rising out of schools, shelters and apartment blocks from Jane and Finch to Crescent Town, our voices have reached the streets and the hallways of power. From the 2004 No One Is Illegal march from Montreal to Ottawa, to the first Toronto May Day of Action in 2006, to the take over of Yonge and Dundas square on May Day in 2009, we have worked tirelessly to create real meaningful change – stopping deportations, winning access to schools, changing federal immigration policy. We have been on picket lines with labour unions, on barricades in solidarity with Indigenous struggles, supported people’s organizations in streets and in communities.
Now, in 2010, as the Conservative government arrests and deports our friends. As they tear apart our families. As they push us in to unsafe jobs. As they call us “bogus refugees” and “illegals”, and do it with a smile, we say no mas, no more.
On May 2, 2009, over 2000 community activists, migrants and allies took to the streets.
We occupied the Yonge and Dundas intersection in the heart of downtown Toronto to make visible the non-status people that this sweatshop city wants to hide away.
We dropped 50 foot banners that read 'No One Is Illegal' and 'Stop the Raids' to make clear that migrants, with or without status, working people and the poor will not be criminalized.
We went to the gates of City Hall dropping massive banners at its doors to insist that Toronto, Ontario and Canada cannot ignore us.
School by school, college by college, hospital by hospital, shelter by shelter, food bank by food bank - one after the other we are going to liberate our homes, our workplaces and our communities. We will make them sanctuaries for all residents. If the powerful few will not let us in to their house of decisions, we will change the decisions where they are put in to practice.
On April 2nd and 3rd, over 100 temporary and undocumented workers were attacked by armed border guards, dragged in to detention and are now being forcibly deported. On 2 May, thousands of us will say Enough!
Migrants, poor and working people; undocumented people and people of colour live in constant crisis in Canada, attacked daily. A crisis has always existed in Teesdale, in Regent Park, in farm fields, on factory floors and in hotel service areas.
Corporate and political elites are using the current 'Economic Crisis' as an excuse to attack poor, working-class and racialized communities by increasing immigration enforcement; stealing public funds; wrecking social services; taking away people's jobs rather than cutting profits and targeting those they perceive as the weakest - indigenous people; the homeless; refugee claimants; women in shelters; queer and trans migrants, caregivers; factory workers and temporary workers.
Saturday, May 3, 2008
Christie Pits Park (at Christie subway station)
*This is a child-friendly demonstration.
Food and drinks will be available.
There will be vehicles on-hand for those with reduced mobility.*
Millions across North America have taken to the streets in the last two years demanding Status for All! In Toronto, workers, students, trade unionists, activists and community members have led passionate demonstrations calling for justice and dignity for immigrants and refugees.
The last year has seen unprecedented targeting of refugees in Sanctuary. Asylum seekers have been arrested from schools, workplaces and even hospital beds. Families have been torn apart. Over 12,000 friends, family, and community members have been deported.
On March 14th 2008, the Conservative government introduced a series of amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), buried in Bill c-50, a 136-page "budget implementation bill". If passed, the Minister will have the discretion to refuse applications even where the applicants meet the elitist and racist criteria for permanent residence, to refuse to even examine humanitarian applications filed from abroad, and to arbitrarily set quotas on the "category" of person that can enter Canada – including quotas based on country of origin.