Food In-Security 

Food security or, more accurately, food insecurity is a pressing and serious issue world-wide and its impact is especially felt in Indigenous communities where families and whole Nations still largely depend on traditional relationships with the Land to survive. These relationships are being encroached on by industrialization, which at best will leave ecosystems irrevocably changed and at worst catastrophically so.


Vancouver Free Market

Following the dissolution of the Occupy encampment in downtown Vancouver, those who had organized together for months to sustain a space in the commercial core of the city splintered into a variety of groups.

The Free Market collective was formed in response to the lack of non-monetized public space and the ongoing stratification of wealth in the city. For three years running, beginning in 2012, the Free Market celebrated life without money by gathering in an East Vancouver park bi-weekly in early Spring and facilitating a free exchanges of goods and services.

Market atmosphere was often festive and carnivalesque with themes, local performers and Food Not Bombs providing free hot meals and produce to those attending. 


Occupy Vancouver

Sparked by mass mobilizations across the world, in particular in Egypt and Spain, the "Occupy" movement took hold first in the financial district of New York City with Occupy Wall street and subsequently spread to almost 1,000 cities around the world.

The Occupy movement declared itself in Canada October 2011 and became a collection of occupations of public spaces with the objective of initiating social dialogue and ultimately social change around issues of economic and democratic inequalities. At the height of the movement there were daily open general assemblies, food, libraries, discussion groups, knowledge sharing and direct actions actively disrupting corporate capitalism. 

Characterized by leaderless, horizontally organized, participatory democratic action, and creative civil disobedience, the movement struggled from harassment by the police and other municipal bodies, political co-opting and a lack of ability to maintain anti-oppressive and decolonization practices.  

Occupy Vancouver launched concurrently with other Occupy cities in Canada on October 15, 2011. The self sustained community in the heart of the city lasted just over a month before a nationally coordinated effort against Occupy encampments using court orders and police raids, brought a end to the tent cities. Without a regular space to collectively organize, Occupy splintered into a variety of political affinity groups still organizing today.


Defending the DTES

Residents of Vancouver's down town east side (DTES) took to the streets today, April 17, 2012, to protest Sequel 138, a municipal development permit for the 100 block of east Hastings. The largely low-income community previously held a open meeting to which they had invited city councillors and the mayor but were stood up. Following the short street rally DTES residents boarded a school bus and were driven to Vancouver City Hall where they non-violently disrupted the council meeting and demanded to be heard.


Vancouver Canucks riot, 2011

On June 15th 2011 100,000 hockey fans, disappointed with the Vancouver Canucks game seven loss in the Stanley Cup Finals, rioted. In the following hours the city descended into violence, property destruction and chaos. 

There were four major contributing factors to the carnage; the alcohol soaked nature of the crowd, the  relationship between the youth and the police, the sheer number of people present and the cultural primer or mental state of the rioters. Although none of these factors excuse or justify the actions of the minority who committed violence and vandalism, they do shed light on the larger societal context of the riot, revealing a communal culpability that would be shortsighted to ignore.