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Monday
Apr302012

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.

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