Protest planned for event featuring Stephen Harper
It’s an invitation-only event, and activists like Stephen Collis aren’t on the guest list. But Prime Minister Stephen Harper is, and so Collis and others are staging a rally at the Pan Pacific Vancouver this Thursday (September 6).
Collis is an organizer with an environmental-justice working group that grew out of Occupy Vancouver. The associate professor in SFU’s department of English indicated that there’s a range of issues people want to raise while Harper is in town.
“Primary for me, and for many people too, are concerns about the undemocratic behaviour of this government,” Collis told the Straight in a phone interview. “And then second, this government’s push towards fossil fuels and nothing but fossil fuels as an economic policy, with all the attendant problems of climate change and global warming that come with that.”
Harper will talk about Canada’s economic ties with Asia starting at 2:05 p.m. at the conference, which is being organized by the Bloomberg media group. The event comes ahead of the September 8 and 9 summit meeting in Vladivostok, Russia, of heads of governments belonging to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. Harper will attend the APEC gathering.
Bloomberg did not make a spokesperson available for comment before the Straight’s deadline.
Peace advocate Derrick O’Keefe will also attend the anti-Harper protest. “Parliament resumes in two weeks, and Harper is counting on a lot of Canadians having forgotten some of what he pushed through in the last session,” O’Keefe told the Straight by phone.
O’Keefe cited Bill C-38, a sweeping omnibus budget-implementation measure that rewrote many existing pieces of legislation, including environmental assessment and fisheries protection.
“It will be a good chance for people to remind Harper of the strong opposition to his Bill C-38, which was really an attack on democracy,” O’Keefe said.