Chantier Politique

December 31, 2016

English Edition, No. 25

2017 Photo Review

September to December

Chantier politique is publishing a photo review of September to December 2017, depicting the struggles and demands of the various collectives of the people of Quebec.

The workers carried on the fight in defence of their rights and of the dignity of labour. Steelworkers at CEZinc in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield went on strike for over nine months against the Noranda/Glencore Income Fund's demands for concessions to their pension plan. They succeeded in forcing the company to back down.

In November, the 1030 steelworkers of the ABI aluminum plant in Bécancour, owned by the U.S. monopoly Alcoa, rejected the company's offer to introduce a two-tier pension plan and create two-tier working conditions with regard to job transfers and mobility.

Workers, environmental and community organizations, citizens of different municipalities and several mayors continued their opposition to the handing over of land to oil and gas monopolies through Bill 106, An Act to implement the 2030 Energy Policy and to amend various legislative provisions. On December 9, 2016, despite the massive opposition of the people in Quebec, the Couillard government rushed to adopt the bill through closure. The people of Quebec and the Indigenous peoples refuse to allow the territory to be handed over to the oil and gas monopolies.

Women and their organizations continued to be at the forefront of the people's struggle for their rights and to humanize society. On the education and healthcare fronts, women workers involved in early childhood education and those employed in healthcare facilities put forward their demands.Their working conditions are the learning conditions of young children, as well as the conditions for the delivery of health care services -- they demand respect for their dignity and their rights.

Support for the peoples of the world struggling for the right to decide their destiny without U.S. imperialist interference and threats was once again demonstrated. Actions in support of the peoples of Cuba, Palestine, Venezuela and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea were held. President Trump's provocative statement with regard to relocating the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, the capital of Palestine, was met with immediate militant opposition.

Below are photos of the workers and people in action in September, October, November and December.

September

Take Back the Night marches held in cities in Quebec and Canada from September 15 - 28 affirm women's important role in the society and reject their treatment as "fair game."
Outaouais




Maniwaki

On September 16, during the World Days of Solidarity with Venezuela, activities in Quebec opposed the threat of military intervention as well as sanctions imposed by the U.S. on Venezuela. They denounced the Canadian government's support of these measures and demanded that Canada oppose U.S. efforts to topple the elected government of President Nicolas Maduro.

Montreal



Ottawa

September 17 monthly picket, which begins outside of St. James United Church and ends in front of the U.S. consulate in Montreal, calls for an end to the U.S. blockade of Cuba and that Guantanamo be returned.


Demonstration in Ottawa on September 18, demanding the Trudeau government withdraw Bill C-27 and its attack on workers' pensions.

On September 21, in Montreal, an evening was held to raise funds for reconstruction in Cuba's regions affected by Hurricane Irma

On September 23, Montreal demonstration supports right of Catalan people to hold a referendum to determine their own future.

On September 27, 4000 people from across Quebec marched and formed a human chain around the National Assembly to denounce the State's abandonment of community organizations. They demanded respect for their autonomy and major investments in social programs and public services.



A delegation of Kanehsata'kehró:non (Kanehsatà:ke people) held a press conference on September 28, on the section of their land annexed into Oka National Park. They denounced the illegal and covert expansion of pipelines on their territory.

Also on September 28, in Montreal, a demonstration was held on the occasion of the Quebec Federation of Municipalities' Convention. Citizens from various Quebec regions are demanding that the exploration and development of natural resources serve the common good, not the oil monopolies. The Couillard government's Bill 106 on hydrocarbons was particularly targeted.

October

On October 4, First Nations women and their allies gathered for the 12th Sisters in Spirit Vigil in memory of all the missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.

Montreal



Ottawa

On October 7, hundreds demonstrated in front of the National Assembly to demand that Quebec's Bill 106 on hydrocarbons be withdrawn. Fracking poses a major threat to the quality of drinking water for municipalities.



A tribute to revolutionary fighter Che Guevara on the 50th anniversary of his assassination was hosted by the Cuban Embassy in Ottawa on October 8, with broad participation by friends of Cuba from Montreal, Gatineau, Ottawa and Toronto. 


On October 30, 11,000 workers in more than 400 early childhood education centres held a one-day strike across Quebec against concession demands from employers and the government on all aspects of bother their working and retirements conditions.

Montreal


Quebec City

La Prairie

Laurentians region

Mauricie region

November

On November 1, Cuba friendship and solidarity organizations held actions in Quebec and Canada,  expressing the support of Quebeckers and Canadians for Cuba's resolution at the UN against the U.S. blockade. The 26th consecutive vote at the UN was nearly unanimous, with only the increasingly isolated U.S. and Israel voting against it.

Montreal


Ottawa

On November 21, infuriated by the deadlock in their negotiations caused by the Quebec government, Quebec paramedics, on strike since March, held an audacious action to shut down the Ministry of Health in Quebec City, symbolizing how the government has blocked negotiations.

On November 22, workers at the ABI aluminum smelter in Bécancour overwhelmingly reject the company's offer that would introduce two-tier pensions and working conditions

A demonstration by unemployed workers and their allies in Forestville on Quebec's North Shore on November 24, demands the federal government immediately adopt measures that will reduce the impoverishment of the population of the region, particularly the unemployed. One such measure is to implement a threshold of 420 hours of work to qualify for 30 weeks of employment insurance benefits, which would eliminate the "black hole" period when workers have no income but do not yet qualify for benefits.




  On November 25, CEZinc’s 371 USW refinery workers in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield sign their new collective agreement after successfully forcing the Noranda Income Fund and mining giant Glencore to withdraw their demands for concessions regarding their pension plan.


On November 29, healthcare workers formed a human chain around the Sainte-Croix hospital, in Drummondville. They say that the starting point to improving services for the people is that their demands be met.


December

On December 1, members of the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé demonstrated outside the psychiatric wing of the Hôtel-Dieu hospital in Lévis where one patient had sequestered another. Nurses denounced present healthcare policies, including the high ratio of patients to workers, which threatens both patient and employee safety.

Montreal action on December 2 denounces British colonial Balfour Declaration that promised Palestinian land for foreign settlement, one of many actions around the world held on the occasion of its centenary. The criminal act by the British empire is the origin of the genocide and theft of Palestinian land as it created the conditions for all the atrocities committed against the Palestinian people and lead to the declaration of the Zionist state.


Meeting in Montreal on December 2, commemorates the first anniversary of the death of Fidel Castro.

December 5 demonstration outside the National Assembly during the so-called public comments period on regulations for the implementation of the Act on hydrocarbons. Demonstrators submitted a petition with 30,000 signatures against these regulations being imposed by the government to serve the oil and gas monopolies at the people’s expense.

December 6 marked the 28th anniversary of the Polytechnique tragedy. Thousands of women and their organizations recommitted to ending the situation where women face violence simply because they are born female. In Montreal, people gathered at the Place du 6-décembre-1989.

Weekly pickets in Montreal against U.S. war preparations on the Korean Peninsula. Similar actions are taking place in Toronto, Ottawa, Edmonton and Vancouver.

December 6

December 13

December 19

In emergency actions the people of Quebec and Canada stand with the heroic Palestinian people to vigorously repudiate the U.S. President's declaration that the U.S. considers Jerusalem the capital of Israel. Below are the Montreal actions.

December 8

December 10




December 16



December 23


On December 17, dedicated activists completed a year of monthly pickets in defence of the Cuban people and their right to sovereignty, free from the criminal U.S. economic blockade.

   Montréal

Ottawa

(Photos: CP, CALAS, CHGA.FM, Halte La Ressource, E. Gabriel, RVHQ, CVH Mont-Saint-Hilaire, CSN, Le Reflet, Le Courant, L'Hebdo journal, Métallos, TVR7, FTQ, C. Giguère-Martel, FIQ, J. Nadeau)


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