Honduras, Canada's free trade, and assassinating the opposition

Raul Burbano of Common Frontiers discusses Canada's support of the post-coup government in Honduras, including the horrific situation faced by Indigenous people and others who opposed the government.


Grassy Narrows River Run 2016: Healthy river, healthy people!

To all land defenders and indigenous justice allies,

Please join us in Toronto at Queen's Park on Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 12 noon to join Grassy Narrows in demanding Kathleen Wynne take action!
The Anishnaabe community of Asubpeeschoseewagong (Grassy Narrows) has asserted its sovereignty over its traditional territories (north of Kenora, ON) for time immemorial. The Women's Drum Group in that community has successfully maintained the longest-running blockade of illegal logging in Canadian history, all through the leadership of grandmothers and women. 
Grassy Narrows, as many of you will know, is well known for something else - the dumping of murderous amounts of mercury into its watershed by local pulp mills in the 1960s, which triggered an ongoing health crisis that the Ontario government has never responsibly addressed. 
This spring, members of the Grassy Narrows community will be traveling 1700 km to Toronto to demand that Kathleen Wynne and the Ontario government take action to clean up the rivers they allowed to be poisoned (and took no action to remedy). This will be the fourth River Run, a mass action in Toronto to assert Grassy Narrows' sovereignty and demand accountability from the Ontario government.
Please join us in Toronto at Queen's Park on Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 12 noon. Lunch will be provided - please let us know of any accessibility or other needs. Please visit the Facebook page for the event here. There will be speaking events in Toronto during the week building up to the mass action at Queen's Park. 
If you are travelling from outside of Toronto, please organize a local contingent! We can provide some material support to help you get to Toronto, if needed. Please email nathan.prier@gmail.com with any questions you might have.
In solidarity,
The Grassy Narrows River Run 2016 Support Committee


Canadian Delegation to Participate in the International Gathering Celebrating the Life of Berta Cáceres in Honduras

Press Relase April 12, 2016

Mining Watch Canada


(Ottawa/Montreal) Today, the ‘Canada Honduras Delegation for Justice, Land and Life’ is traveling to Tegucigalpa for the International Peoples Gathering ‘Berta Cáceres Lives’. First Nations women leaders, lawyers, filmmakers and solidarity activists make up the delegation that has been organized in the wake of the murder of Berta Cáceres’ on March 3rd, followed closely by her colleague Nelson Garcia’s murder on March 14th.

Berta Cáceres was a Indigenous, feminist and environmental activist and winner of the 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize whose murder has sparked an unprecedented outcry around the world for justice, truth and reparation in Honduras. Berta and the organization that she helped found, the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), have been fighting powerful economic and political interests to keep hydroelectric dams and mining concessions off of Indigenous Lenca territory.

“From the get go, the investigation into Berta’s murder and the attempted murder against Mexican activist Gustavo Castro, who was with her at the time, has been fraught with irregularities. Yet, the Canadian government’s response has been insufficient, failing to question this process. We will be documenting what we hear to bring that back to Ottawa next week,” remarked Catherine Morris from Lawyers Rights Watch Canada.

Dozens of Civil Society Organisations Demand Canadian Government Take Action on

from Brent Patterson's blog on the Council of Canadian's

The Council of Canadians has joined with MiningWatch Canada, Rights Action and numerous other organizations in sending a letter to the Canadian government following the murders of land defenders Berta Cáceres and Nelson Garcia, ongoing threats against the Council of Indigenous and Popular Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), and the precarious situation of Mexican activist Gustavo Castro, who witnessed Berta's murder.

The letter says it is imperative that the Canadian government press publicly, and use every other means available, to demand Honduran authorities:

- Guarantee the security of all of the members of COPINH, Berta’s family and Gustavo Castro through full implementation of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) precautionary measures;
- Incorporate a group of independent international investigators who have the trust of Berta’s family and COPINH into the ongoing investigation into Berta’s assassination through an agreement with the IACHR. This should also be expanded to include the threats, criminalization and murder of other members of COPINH including Nelson Garcia;
- Lift the measure that currently impedes Gustavo Castro’s safe and immediate return to Mexico;
- Immediately and definitively revoke the Energy Development Company’s (DESA) concession for the Agua Zarca project, granted without the Lenca peoples' free, prior and informed consent; suspend, review and annul all other hydroelectric and mining concessions on Lenca territory granted without the Lenca people’s free, prior and informed consent; demilitarize Lenca territory; and respect the Lenca people’s autonomy.

The letter also calls on the Trudeau government to:

- Cut off Canadian public funding to the Honduran government and security forces through the Anti-Crime Capacity Building Program (ACCBP) and the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START);
- Given the lack of free, prior and informed consent of the Lenca Indigenous people, suspend all Canadian government and public support – including funding, investment insurance, government and embassy services of any kind – that HydroSys and any other related investors in projects along the Gualcarque River might be receiving;
- Ensure that no Canadian overseas development aid, other financing or services are used to support infrastructure or mega-projects that do not have the free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous peoples whose lands and rights will be affected, in accordance with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and International Labour Organization Convention 169 as minimum standards. While violence is used to silence Indigenous people who exercise their right to oppose projects that will affect their lands and rights, conditions do not exist to guarantee free, prior and informed consent;
- Investigate the Canadian government’s role in Honduras during and since the 2009 military-backed coup by expanding the parliamentary committee study on Honduras, ensuring broad public participation.

Copies of the letter were also sent to Honduran and Mexican representatives in Canada.

Since the coup in Honduras in 2009, more than 100 environmental activists have been murdered. During this same period, Canadian authorities pushed for a new mining law and negotiated a free trade agreement with Honduras.



To read the full letter to the Canadian government, click here

Supreme Court Grants Chippewas of the Thames First Nation Challenge to Line 9

The Supreme Court of Canada has set November 30th, 2016 to start hearing the appeal of the Line 9 approval.


Supreme Court Grants Chippewas of the Thames First Nation Challenge to Line 9: Community Hopeful of Meaningful Consultation with the Crown

MUNCEY, March 10, 2016 – the Supreme Court of Canada has granted the Chippewas of the Thames leave to appeal a decision of the Federal Court of Appeal relating to an Application before the National Energy Board to repurpose the Line 9 Pipeline.

At issue is whether the Crown exercised its duty to meaningfully consult and accommodate the Chippewas on a project that may potentially impact their Aboriginal and Treaty rights. The Chippewas are challenging the Crown’s paternalistic policies based on denial and extinguishment of rights. Relying on s. 35 of the Constitution and previous Supreme Court rulings, the First Nation continues to urge negotiation and reconciliation.

Chief of the Chippewas of the Thames, Leslee White-Eye welcomed the decision, saying, “Our community is pleased by this forward step but the path before us is still long as we continue to seek protection of our Aboriginal and Treaty rights. We need to bring home that we are not acting alone in the action, nor that it is for our sole benefit but an attempt to seek protection of our water – these energy developments are one of many across the nation impacting our rights”.

According to Chief White-Eye, “Our members were very distressed by the Federal Court of Appeal’s dismissal of the appeal when they failed to acknowledge our Aboriginal and Treaty rights. The Court did not consider previous decisions, which establish the Crown’s duty to meaningfully consult with and accommodate us on projects that may potentially impact those rights, such as Line 9.”

The Crown’s failure to consult has stalled negotiations, prevented Chippewas of the Thames from benefiting from their collective rights and has impeded economic development for all stakeholders. It has also undermined the Nation’s development as a government. Still, Chief White-Eye remains optimistic by stating that “a positive final decision from the Supreme Court will hopefully pave the way for reconciliation with the Crown.”


Justice For Beau Baker!!!!! End Police impunity!!!!!!

Listen to Audio: : 

This episode of KW Radio Basics we talk about police impunity. Topics explored include the murder of Beau Baker by police, as well as Waterloo Regional Police Services screening police complaints of the so called independent body overlooking policing known as the OIPRD in the case of Thornton.


Discussion with Badee Dwaik

Listen to Audio: : 

Badee Dwaik, a human rights defender in Palestine sits down and talks with us about the occupation of Palestine, g4s, the Oslo agreement and the need for Palestinians to control their own destiny. Badee Dwaik is the coordinator of Human Rights Defenders, and they can be contacted at defenders.human@gmail.com


Release Seamus Daly!!!!!!!!

Listen to Audio: : 

Community Discussion with Cait Trainor from Ireland about the case of Seamus Daly, wrongly imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. For more info please check www.releaseseamusdaly.com


Community Discussion With Evalyn

Listen to Audio: : 

Today we have a discussion with a member of our community Evalyn who is seven and goes to Silver Heights Publics


Sing Hey! Love, Struggle, and Community with Janice Jo Lee

Kitchener based artist Janice Jo Lee joins AW@L Radio in studio for a discussion on her new album Sing Hey and the cross Canada tour she is embarking on.


Press Release - Land Protectors Shut Down Enbridge’s Line 9 Near Aamjiwnaang!

This morning individuals have shut of the flow of oil on Enbridge’s line 9 pipeline. At 7:30 this morning, individuals used the manual hand wheel at a valve site to shut off the flow of oil through line 9 as an act of protest. They have locked themselves on site to prevent the operation of the pipeline.Line 9 is a highly contested tar sands pipeline that began shipping crude earlier this month between Sarnia and Montreal. Those involved assert that the operation of line 9 is a violation of indigenous sovereignty and treaty rights.

The 32CSM, In Defense of 1916

Listen to Audio: : 

On KW Radio Basics we had a discussion with Francis Mackey, chair of the 32CSM on the current state of Irish Revolutionary Republicansism. Issues discussed included the coming Centenary of the 1916 uprising.


podcast: Criminalisation and Harassment of LGBTQ Prisoners in Kitchener's Federal Prison.

In early November 2015, the "Being Queer Is Not Illegal" campaign was launched by prisoner solidarity group GVI Watch. The group, acting in solidarity with the prisoners held at the Grand Valley Institute (GVI), a large federal prison for woman in Kitchener Ontario, was asking people to phone into the prison after prisoner reports of surging harassment , discrimination, and criminalisation of LGBTQ prisoners by guards.
In a November 10th post on the group's webpage https://gviwatch.wordpress.com, the situation was described as:

"a recent crackdown against LGBTQ2+ prisoners and/or prisoners in relationships amongst themselves. Intimate relationships between prisoners are being attacked by a clique of guards acting without apparent direction or oversight from the Corrections Canada administration."
The post continues: "Harassment of prisoners includes throwing them in solitary as punishment for being in a relationship, threatening them with transfers to remote parts of the country, separating partners by placing them in different parts of the prison, and laying spurious institutional charges that can lead to being locked in the maximum security unit.

Most troublingly, guards have been using physical intimidation and invasions of personal space to harass prisoners who speak up against these practices. In violation of their own rules individual guards have been entering prisoners’ cells at night,with an institutional history of sexual violence and exploitation of prisoners by guards at GVI, this can only be understood as a threat."
The post goes on to describe a growing culture of impunity among guards and prison officials as the jail is without a warden and the federal prison investigator has not had his contract renewed, which GVI watch says is "leaving no one to respond to grievance reports filed by prisoners."

While the prisoners themselves have been organising on the inside, their efforts have been met with repression from the guards. GVI watch reported on November 17th that the pressure from the call-in campaign was working, with prison officials stating they would allow an LGBTQ2+ group to form among prisoners.

While, promising to continue "watching closely to ensure the prison does not go back on their word", and with a win in hand, on December 4th, GVIwatch called for an end to this phase of the call-in campaign noting that:

"The issue of the criminalization of queer prisoners is still ongoing though, so stay tuned!

-There are still prisoners in max because of this, but they’re appealing their transfer from medium
-Many prisoners have been to segregation in the past month, a disturbing trend that’s still ongoing
-Some institutional charges have been dropped against queer prisoners, reducing their daily stress, but some charges remain"
The group concluded their post: "GVI Watch is thinking about the folks inside, and hoping those who are allowed to attend the holiday Family Day event have a great day."

GVI watch also highlighted https://changeandprison.wordpress.com the re-launched blog of Nyki Kish, a prisoner at GVI, which was launched just prior to the start of the Being Queer is Not Illegal Campaign. The posts are of Nyki's experiences in the prison and her critiques of the system which holds her unjustly captive as woman innocent of the crime she was convited for. For more on Nyki's wrongful imprisonment and to find out how you can support her check http://freenyki.org/
Today AW@L Radio is grateful to present a recording of Nyki Kish reading her piece "The Criminalization of LGBTQ People in the Grand Valley Institution for Women Part I – Our Story"https://changeandprison.wordpress.com/2015/11/26/the-criminalization-of-... .

I want to thank Nyki for her courageous efforts in documenting her struggle and spreading her experiences and critiques from inside the jail, and thanks as well to those who recorded and sent AW@L Radio this powerful piece of audio.

This has been AW@L Radio, i'm your host @dankellar, thanks for listening.

LSPIRG's "I Am Not A Costume" Campaign on Cultural Appropriation

As Halloween approached, the Laurier Students Public Interest Research Group activated their "I Am Not A Costume" campaign, which included posters being put up around campus seeking to challenge students into thinking about the appropriateness and impacts of wearing stereotypical, racist, or culturally appropriative costumes while celebrating the eve. In addition to Vandalism of the posters, there was also a wave of aggressive and oppressive online backlash.

Today we speak with Mohammed Akbar, a staff member of LSPIRG, to get details about the campaign and reaction to it as well as other efforts LSPIRG is undertaking to combat racism and other oppressions on campus. Mohammad also places the "I Am Not A Costume" campaign into the larger idea of building safe(r) spaces on campus and throughout our communities and strengthening freedom of expression and debate.
For more information on the work LSPRIG does, check http://lspirg.org


Interview With Green Party Candidate David Weber

Listen to Audio: : 

Today we sit and chat with Green Party member and Candidate David Weber. Weber is running in the riding of Kitchener South-Hespler and on this program issues such as poverty, the enviroment euthanasia and others are covered. 


An Evening for This Changes Everything - Support Indigenous Rights - Fight Line 9

Friday, October 9, 2015 - 13:30

Before the Friday 7pm showing of the This Changes Everything documentary at Princess Cinemas, hear Chippewas of the Thames band councilor and educator Myeengun Henry speak about resource developments and the line 9 pipeline, and Indigenous rights. 5:30pm at Waterloo Town Square.

from press release: Join Chippewas of the Thames Band Councillor, and respected Elder Myeengun Henry for the opening of Avi Lewis and Naomi Klein's film "This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate" on October 9 at 5:30 PM at Waterloo Town Square. After a short rally we will march to Princess Cinemas where Myeengun will say a few words and introduce the 7:00 PM showing.

more info on the demo fb: https://www.facebook.com/events/1638883949728593/

more on the film: http://www.princesscinemas.com/movie/this-changes-everything

Indigenous women Shut Down Energy East Pipeline consultation hearing.

First Nations vow to protect lands and waters stating no consent means no


Enbridge Line 9 Work Disrupted as Demonstrators Demand an End to Tar Sands, Fracking

Port Hope -- Opponents of Enbridge's Line 9 Tar Sands and fracking pipeline
are in Port Hope at the site of testing operations of the controversial
pipeline. Enbridge is conducting newly mandated hydrostatic testing on
three segments of the 40-year-old pipeline before the company can be
permitted to pump bitumen through it. Activists maintain that this testing
in no way mitigates Line 9's impacts.

“Running water through a few spots in this aging pipeline doesn't mean it
won't break, and moveover it does nothing to address the devastation
wrought by the tar sands and fracking fields,” says demonstrator Niloofar
Gol. “We are opposed to Enbridge's Line 9 project because it facilitates
tar sands and fracking expansion, which is poisoning Indigenous
communities, damaging ecosystems and contributing to catastrophic climate


Food Systems, Indigenous Rights, And Aging Pipelines - Local Food BBQ Fundraiser for Chippewas of the Thames Line 9 Legal Challenge

*What: Food Systems, Indigenous Rights, And Aging Pipelines - Local Food
BBQ Fundraiser for Chippewas of the Thames Line 9 Legal Challenge*

*When: Sunday August 23rd, 1pm in Victoria Park* (at the back of the park
near the picnic/children's area)

fb link: https://www.facebook.com/events/1638733099735326/

Are you interested in local food systems, clean water, and a healthy,
vibrant environment? Do you want to learn more about the Grand River
watershed and the treaties that bind us as residents of this land? If so,
then come to the No Line 9 fundraiser barbeque **this Sunday, August 23,
1pm, in Victoria Park**.

The barbeque will be raising funds for the legal challenge being mounted by
Chippewas of the Thames First Nation against Enbridge's Line 9 pipeline.
Line 9 puts the Grand River watershed at risk, which means a serious threat
to local farming and drinking water sources that rely on the river. The
pipeline has already had 35 significant spills, and Enbridge's plan would
have the 36th be of tar sands dilbit, which cannot be cleaned up. Line 9
has also been rammed through the Harper government's weakened approval
process without consulting affected Indigenous nations, which given the
serious environmental impact it will have, is the basis of the Chippewas of
the Thames challenge.

Joining us on Sunday are speakers from Chippewas of the Thames and Six
Nations who will discuss the pipeline's potential impacts to Indigenous
food systems and regional watersheds, as well as relevant nation-to-nation
treaties and agreements between Indigenous peoples and Canada.

The barbeque will feature locally sourced food with both vegan and meat
options. We ask for donations to the legal fund of a suggested
$5-$20 for your meal.

For more on this event, or to get more information about the Line 9
pipeline project, visit http://noline9wr.ca on the web or @NoLine9WR on

If you have any further questions please e-mail us at

See you Sunday!

Article: Enbridge and the National Energy Board Push To Open Line 9 Ahead of Legal Challenge by Indigenous Community

Ahead of the June 16th court date for the Chippewas of the Thames First Nation, Rachel Avery and Dan Kellar of the Grand River Media Collective have written an article for the Media Coop discussing the federal appeal, constitutional responsibilities, third party consultation, as well as the ongoing risks associated with the Line 9 pipeline reversal project.

To read the article, click the following link:



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