Organizations Launch Campaign of Non-Cooperation with Canadian Spy Agency

February 1, 2012 Canada, Police & Prisons, Quebec

[Editor's note: BASICS has joined the campaign of non-cooperation with CSIS and encourages other peoples' organizations to join in this important endeavour]

Montreal, 29 January 2012 — Almost seventy organizations (see below) have joined a call to end all cooperation with Canada’s spy agency, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). On the initiative of the Montreal-based People’s Commission Network, the campaign of total non-cooperation with CSIS was publicly launched at a press conference today. The organizations advise their members to neither speak nor listen to CSIS agents.

People's Commission press conference

“For far too long we have tolerated the unacceptable activities of CSIS, whether through a false sense of loyalty or fear. We are here today to say that we will no longer voluntarily cooperate with CSIS when its agents come knocking on our doors or show up unannounced at our workplaces. We will not put ourselves, our neighbours, our friends, our families here or overseas, our organizations and our work for justice at risk by speaking with or listening to CSIS agents. We will say no to CSIS and yes to freedom from fear and political control,” said Marie-Eve Lamy, active in the People’s Commission Network.

Over the last decade, CSIS’s budget has increased by 140%, reaching $430 million in 2009. In 2010, the agency maintained almost 3000 employees. It also had information-sharing agreement with 147 countries. CSIS has been heavily involved in several Canadian cases of rendition to torture but has emerged from these and other scandals unscathed, protected by a broad mandate, laws assuring the secrecy of its operations, and lack of any real accountability.

“By questioning Arabs about their political views and about each other, and by implying that pro-Palestinian and anti-colonial perspectives are suspect, CSIS has in the past succeeded in sowing fear and silencing support for justice and freedom in the Middle East,” said Amy Darwish, an organizer with Tadamon! Montreal, which works for justice in the Middle East.

“Intelligence agencies have a tendency to view union activists as subversives; we cannot encourage informing, nor passing on information that could be used against people whose only fault is to want to have their rights recognized,” said Francis Lagacé, second vice-President of the Conseil central du Montréal métropolitain de la CSN.
“CSIS tactics create fear and isolation in our communities, particularly immigrant communities. In the face of their intimidation and racial profiling, migrant justice groups are responding with weapons of solidarity and support, aiming to render CSIS ineffective with a campaign of non-collaboration, while also supporting individuals pressured by CSIS during the immigration process,” said Jaggi Singh, a member of Solidarity Across Borders.

“Migrants, refugees, women in crisis are already insecure. CSIS exploits them, preying on their vulnerability. With this campaign of non-collaboration, we convey to them they are not alone; there are many of us working in solidarity to protect our communities; to protect one another,” said Dolores Chew, on behalf of the South Asian Women’s Community Centre.

The People’s Commission and its allies will be carrying out a series of activities over the next months to shine a spotlight on CSIS abuse and break the fear and isolation among those targetted by CSIS.

 

-30-

Media Contacts
514 222 0205 (english)
438-838-8498 (french)

Source
People’s Commission Network
www.peoplescommission.org
commissionpopulaire@gmail.com

 

The following groups have endorsed the People Commission Network’s Community Advisory concerning non-collaboration with the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS):

Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians
Apatrides anonymes
Association facultaire étudiante des sciences humaines de l’UQAM (AFESH-UQAM)
Quebec Trans Health Action (ASTT(e)Q)
Barriere Lake Solidarity Collective
Base de Paix de Montréal
Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada
Canadian Arab Federation
Centre communautaire des Punjabis du Québec
Centre de ressources éducatives et communautaires pour adultes (CRÉCA)
Centre for Philippine Concerns
Centre Québécois de Formation pour les jeunes en matière de droits humains
Certain Days Political Prisoner Calendar Committee
CKUT Steering Committee
Collective against police brutality (COBP)
Comité des sans-emploi Montréal-Centre
Comité pour les droits humains en Amérique latine (CDHAL)
Community Coalition Against Racism (Hamilton, Ontario)
Convergence des luttes anti-capitalistes (CLAC)
Coalition contre la répression et les abus policiers
Conseil central du Montréal Métropolitain – CSN
Canadian Council of Muslim Women – Ottawa Chapter
Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW)
CUTV
Dignidad Migrante
DIRA Bibiothèque Anarchiste
El-Hidaya Association
Fédération nationale des enseignantes et enseignants du Québec (FNEEQ-CSN)
Front d’action populaire en réaménagement urbain (FRAPRU)
Haiti Action Montreal
Halifax Peace Coalition
Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War
Immigrant Workers Centre (IWC)
Independent Jewish Voices
Indigeous Solidarity Committee (Montreal)
l’Union communiste libertaire (UCL)
La Pointe Libertaire
Latin American Canadian Solidarity Association (London, Ontario)
Le Mouvement RebELLEs
Mouvement Action-Chômage de Montréal
No One Is illegal Montreal
No One Is Illegal Ottawa
No One Is Illegal Toronto
No One Is illegal Vancouver
NOWAR-PAIX (Ottawa, Ontario)
Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP)
Organisation populaire des droits sociaux de la région de Montréal (OPDS-RM)
Ottawa Muslim Women’s Organization (OMWO)
Palestinian and Jewish Unity (PAJU)
Parti communiste revolutionnaire (PCR)
People for Peace, London
People’s Commission Network
Project X
Projet Accompaniment Solidarité Colombie (PASC)
QPIRG Concordia
QPIRG McGill
Queer McGill Political Action Working Group
Société Bolivarienne du Québec/Hands Off Venezuela
Solidarity Across Borders
South Asian Women’s Community Centre (SAWCC)
Sudbury Against War and Occupation
Tadamon! Montreal
The Dominion
Toronto Action for Social Change
Vancouver Media Co-op (Editorial Collective)
Yeni Hayat
8th March Committee of Women of Diverse Origins
2110 Centre

Canada, Police & Prisons, Quebec

Leave a Reply