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#May1TO - A photo essay

by Kevin Konnyu

Taken from the Facebook event call-out:

 Rally and March starting at City Hall, marching to Joe Fresh to demand justice for Bangladeshi garment workers and ending at Little Norway Park in solidarity with striking workers at Porter (Queens Quay and Bathurst)

More info with links:
Poster series imagining a Solidarity City:

For seven years, you have marched on May Day to celebrate and invigorate migrant justice struggles in Toronto. On International Workers Day, we march to build a Solidarity City. Solidarity City is a unified struggle for: Respect for Indigenous Sovereignty, Status for All, an End to Imperialism and Environmental Destruction, an End to Austerity and Attacks on the Poor and Working class, continued resistance against Patriarchy, Racism, Ableism and Homophobia and Transphobia

Pipelines, tankers, mines, and so-called development projects are being forced onto the lands of Indigenous nations. Harper, like every Prime Minister who came before him, refuses to respect the sovereignty of Indigenous peoples and continues to neglect his treaty obligations, as seen in Omnibus Bill C-45. In the face of this and more, land defenders across Turtle Island continue to resist in powerful and inspiring ways. As we look towards an exciting summer of action and resistance fueled by the Idle No More movement, this May Day let us honor all ongoing decolonization struggles and commit to continuing our support for Indigenous sovereignty.

The past year has seen the implementation of C-31, dubbed the Refugee Exclusion Act, further criminalizing migrants and expanding the detention and deportation machine. Jason Kenney announced the creation of a designated countries of origin, a racist, two tiered system under which refugees get fewer rights based on their place of birth. This past November, many of us honored our communities and confronted Minister Kenney when he showed up in Toronto. On May 1st, let us take to the streets to build community alliances and resistance once again. 

Exploitative temporary worker programs continue to expand and many migrant workers continue to meet deportation, injuries and in some cases death. Workers are being forced to pay thousands of dollars to get jobs in Canada for which entire families go in to debt, yet no provisions exist for status on landing. Since Harper came into power, over 72,000 people have been locked up in immigration detention. In December we rallied in solidarity with security certificate detainees Mohammad Mahjoub, Mohamed Harkat and Mahmoud Jaballah and all those locked up in immigration detention. This May Day let us take to the streets to end detentions and deportations and to call for freedom to move, freedom to stay and freedom to return!

On February 21st, Toronto City Hall reaffirmed its promise to providing services to residents without full immigration status. We will continue to build a Solidarity City where communities work together to ensure justice and dignity for all residents. The history of Access Without Fear in Toronto is a long one and on May Day let us march to celebrate our victories and commit to continued struggle. 

In the face of austerity, climate destruction, colonial and capitalist wars and interventions here and across the world that push people out of their homes, let us fight for status for all. Status for All is the struggle for self-determination, just livelihood, housing, food, education, healthcare, childcare, shelter, justice and dignity for all people, with or without immigration status.

Coordinated by a coalition of community groups including Afghans United for Justice, AIDS ACTION NOW!, Anakbayan Toronto, Association of Part-Time Undergraduate Students (APUS), Camp Sis, Casa Salvador Allende, Cinema Politica, Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA), Common Cause Toronto,Common Causes, CUPE local 1281,CUPE Local 4772, CUPE 3906 Executive, CUPE 3906 Political Action Committee, CUPE 4308, CUPE Ontario International Solidarity Committee, Educators for Peace and Justice, Faculty for Palestine (F4P), Grassroots Ontario Animal Liberation (GOAL) Network, Greater Toronto Workers' Assembly, Health for All, Independent Jewish Voices, Toronto, Injured Workers Action for Justice, International Alliance in Support of Workers in Iran, International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Canada, International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Canada, International Socialists, Jane and Finch Action Against Poverty [JFAAP], Latin American and Caribbean Solidarity Network, Law Union of Ontario, maggie's: toronto sex workers action project, May 1st Movement, No One Is Illegal - Toronto,Ontario Coalition Against Poverty,OPIRG York, Refugees without Border, Revolutionary Women's Collective-women united against imperialism, Rhythms of Resistance - Toronto,Rising Tide Toronto, Socialist Action / Ligue pour l'Action socialiste. Socialist Party of Ontario,Socialist Project, Student Christian Movement, The Mining Injustice Solidarity Network, The Sanctuary Network, Student Christian Movement, Toronto Haiti Action Committee, Toronto New Socialists, Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape, Toronto Young New Democrats, Trans Film Series,United Food and Commercial Workers, Women's Coordinating Committe for a Free Wallmapu [Toronto], Workers' Action Centre, York Federation of Students, Local 68 Canadian Federation of Students and more. To endorse the event, fill out this form

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