Posted 10 years ago on May 22, 2012, 2:15 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Today, students and their allies in Quebec mark the 100th day of protest since the beginning of a student strike to defend accessible public education and oppose tuition increases. The strike has spread and become a general revolt against austerity and corrupt, illegitimate politicians. Throughout the massive demonstrations, which have reached sizes of around 300,000 people, riot police have brutally attacked marchers using clubs, grenades, rubber bullets, and chemical weapons. Two protesters have lost eyes and one has nearly died. Police have also illegally arrested entire busloads of protesters on their way to or from demos.
Last week, the government of Quebec passed an emergency law (Loi 78) criminalizing the massive demonstrations and assemblies in an effort to stamp out the strike. The new law restricts demonstrations and orders the closing of some universities. Among other things, organizers must inform police of the route of any demonstration that includes 50 or more people 8 hours before the demonstration. Unions and student federations are threatened with fines of up to $125,000 if someone is prevented from entering an educational institution.
Just after the law passed, thousands took to the streets in Montreal. Student and union leaders, activists, the Quebec Bar, and opposition politicians see the law as a direct attack on the right to demonstrate. Quebec Premier Jean Charest and Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay´s attempts to legislate the end of the student movement and attack on the democratic freedom to assemble must be resisted. The policies of austerity and repression are global; so is our indignation.
Today in New York City, we will demonstrate in solidarity with Quebec students and in defense of our right to protest. An increase in the powers of the police and the state anywhere is an attack on us everywhere.
TUESDAY, MAY 22 – SOLIDARITY WITH QUEBEC STUDENT STRIKE
Frankfurt, Chicago, Quebec. We are with you!
2pm to 4pm—Demonstrate, 1 Rockefeller Plaza
Demonstration in solidarity with the Quebec Student Strike
Outside the Quebec Government Offices at 1 Rockefeller Plaza
5pm—Gather, Check-in, Washington Square Park, North Side of Fountain
Gather to paint banners, make ‘book bloc’ shields, and cut red squares for the evening march.
Check-in for those who want to facilitate lectures, workshops, skill-shares, and discussions. Please bring all the materials you may need to make banners and host classes.
6pm—Free University, Washington Square Park, various locations-- check board on North Side of Fountain
Teach in/Speak out assembly about the Quebec student strike, the emergency laws, and the criminalization of dissent; followed by self-organized lectures, workshops, skill-shares, and discussions of the Free University.
8pm—Assembly and March, Washington Square Park
General Assembly and March against Repressive anti-protest laws worldwide
Organized by folks from Strike Everywhere and Occupy Wall Street.
Follow the Quebec strike on Twitter: #manifencours #ggi #loi78 #mai22
RSVP to NYC event on Facebook
Request for solidarity and support for the Legal Committee of the CLASSE
We write you during a dark time for democratic, human and associative rights in Quebec with the following appeal for your help and solidarity. As you have no doubt heard, the government recently enacted legislation that amounts to the single biggest attack on the right to organize and freedom of expression in North America since the McCarthy period and the biggest attack on civil and democratic rights since the enactment of the War Measures Act in 1970. Arguably, this recent law will unduly criminalize more law-abiding citizens than even McCarthy's hearings and the War Measures Act ever could.