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(en) Canada, Toronto [ocap*] Solidariy Sale to Support Street Vendors OF CHINATOWN!

From OCAP <ocap@tao.ca>
Date Mon, 19 Jul 2004 09:10:16 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
News about and of interest to anarchists
http://ainfos.ca/ http://ainfos.ca/index24.html

Stand up to City’s Crackdown! Bring Items to Sell. All Proceeds to the Vendors!
North East Corner of Dundas and Spadina, Saturday, July 24, at Noon
The same agenda of upscale redevelopment that is replacing low income
housing with condos and that is driving homeless people from the places
where they take shelter has now taken aim at the street vendors of
Chinatown. Poor people selling vegetables or other merchandise are not
part of the vision of a tourist haven ‘Chinese Yorkville’ that is being
promoted in this area of the City.
On July 10, a 74 year old Chinese woman selling vegetables had her
produce taken from her by city officials and, in the course of this, one
of these ‘enforcement officers’ pushed her into a passing baby carriage.
She has suffered spinal injuries as a result. Another woman, one of the
few who has been able to get a licence to sell her merchandise had it all
confiscated by the City on the spurious grounds that she was not moving
her barrow often enough. It cost her $600 to recover her belongings which
were mainly ruined while in storage. One Iraqi man who sells shoes was
just ticketed under the infamous ‘Safe Streets Act’ for ‘solicit near
public transit vehicle’. A street car passes by the spot where he sells
but no passengers get on or off anywhere close to him.

Communication and meetings have revealed that this drive to socially
cleanse Chinatown is supported by the Mayor and the local member of
Council, Olivia Chow. It is an ugly persecution of poor people trying to
survive that all people of conscience should oppose. After holding
discussions with the vendors, we have decided to launch a campaign to
defend them and to demand of the City that it negotiate around the rights
of vendors to function in much the same way as recently took place in New
York City.

On July 24, we are asking that people assemble on the corner of Dundas and
Sherbourne to stand in solidarity with the street vendors. If you are
able to bring produce, baked goods or other items to sell, that would be
great. The only thing we ask is that all who sell that day should agree
to give the proceeds to the local vendors. Many of them are trying to
raise the funds to recover their merchandise from the City after it has
been confiscated and could use your help. If you simply want to come out
to show your support, however, that will also be much appreciated.

In order to help us plan, if you are going to be selling things that day
or, if you can be a Chinese translator, please call our office and let us
know (416.925.6939)

If the City and the vested interests think that a few dozen street
vendors are in the way of their plans for yuppie redevelopment and try to
sweep them from the streets, let’s show that we can give them a bigger
problem and force them to back off.

Thank you for your solidarity,

Ontario Coalition Against Poverty
10 Britain St. Toronto, ON M5A 1R6
416-925-6939 ocap@tao.ca www.ocap.ca
* [Ed. Note: OCAP is antiauthoritarian anticapitalist
direct action social struggle initiative.]

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