Friday, February 6, 2009

Our major events in February 2009

Environmental / social justice film showings and public education events at the University of Toronto in February 2009, organized by Graduate Students Union Social Justice Committee, Students Against Climate Change and Toronto Mining Support Group. Contact Paul York for more information.

1) Feb 11 – free documentary screening of The 11th Hour, one of the best films on climate change ever made

2) Feb 18 – free documentary screening of The Greatest Silence, a film on war in the Congo, mining, and rape

3) Feb 19 – public lecture on global warming and food by Wayne Roberts

4) Feb 28 – presentation on mining at Amnesty International conference on water and human rights


1) Wed. Feb 11 – free documentary screening of The 11th Hour, one of the best films on climate change ever made

This is best introduction to the issue, and also very inspiring, providing a much-needed message of hope in the face of catastrophic events. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

Wed. Feb. 11th, 2009

7:00 p.m.

Medical Sciences building, room 2172, U of T, 1 Kings College Circle (near Queens Park subway)

There will be a brief slideshow afterwards on local and national climate change issues, and how you can get involved in the various groups working on these issues -- including Toronto Climate Campaign, Greenpeace Canada, Students Against Climate Change, etc.



2) Wed. Feb 18 – free documentary screening of The Greatest Silence, a film on war in the Congo, mining, and rape and mutilation as a weapon of war

Wed. Feb. 18
7:00 p.m.
Hart House, Music Room, 7 Hart House Circle, University of Toronto

Trailer from the film

Showing of The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo. Hosted by the Graduate Student Union Social Justice Commitee, University of Toronto. The film and speaker will be introduced by Sara Suliman, chair of the committee.

For over ten years now, a war has been raging in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). To date, over 5.4 million people have been killed, and many more have been tortured, beat, and raped – most of them women. Through kidnapping, mutilation, rape and torture, the soldiers of both foreign militias and the Congolese army are holding women hostage in their own country.

In 2006, Emmy Award winning producer/director Lisa F. Jackson spent the year in the war zones of eastern DRC. She documented the tragic situation women and girls are forced to deal with as they stand in the middle of a country's conflict they did not create, and cannot control.

Jackson was given privileged access to not only the horrific realities of life in the DRC, but was also shown the resilience, strength, courage and grace of the people of the DRC.

After the film there will be a talk by Bodia Marcharia, followed by discussion. Bodia Macharia is an active member of the GSU Social Justice Commitee. She was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo where she spent most of her early life.

* * *

The international silence regarding the human rights tragedy of the Democratic Republic of Congo, eastern part, is shameful, echoing the silence and indifference of industrial countries towards Rawanda and before that the Holocaust. The mass displacement and murder of six million people and systematic rape and mutilation of women should not have been ignored by the international community. Unfortunately, the World Bank and extraction industries are in part responsible for this atrocity, which might account for the silence of Canada, which harbours and subsidizes extraction companies that operate there. For information the role of Canadian mining companies in the Congo see:

For more information on the GSU Social Justice Committee:

Take action. Please sign this petition - Stop Rape as a Weapon of War:



3) Thurs. Feb 19 – public lecture on global warming and food by Wayne Roberts

Global warming and food - a presentation by Wayne Roberts
“Some like it spicey (rather than hot): how wise and healthy food choices are cool for the climate”

Thurs. Feb. 19, 7:00 p.m.
Hart House, East Common Room, 7 Hart House Circle, University of Toronto

Wayne Roberts manages the Toronto Food Policy Council (TFPC), a citizen body of 30 food activists and experts that is widely recognized for its innovative approach to food security.

He's been a major player in several Toronto plans that have been crucial for public health and the environment, most notably the City's Environmental Plan and its Food and Hunger Action Plan and food charter.

Many of his most imaginative ideas, often based on extensive meetings and direct encounters with international leaders of the food movement, can be found in his newly-released book, The No-Nonsense Guide to World Food.

Dr. Roberts has been invited to speak around the world on strategies that combine food security, community empowerment, environmental improvement, social equity and job creation.

* * *

Wayne's talk will present key information on the well-kept secret that the food system is responsible for a third of all global warming emissions and the even better-kept secret that moving to less gassy foods will benefit the economy, public health and enjoyment of food as well as the environment.

Wayne's powerpoint will feature photgraphs he's taken during research expeditions in Asia and South America.



4) Sat. Feb 28 – presentation on mining at Amnesty International conference on water and human rights – Toronto Mining Support Group presentation in the afternoon

Water: A Human Right? Let's Make It Our Business!

Saturday, February 28, 2009
O.I.S.E. Auditorium
Cost: Free
Lunch is included

An opportunity to learn about Water as a Human Right
what are the issues?
what can we do?
what is the role of business?

Amnesty International, Toronto Business & Human Rights group hosts an exploration of the role of business in respecting water as a Human Right

Co-presented by
Department of Sociology and Equity Studies in Education
O.I.S.E. University of Toronto, Professor Margrit Eichler
Rotary District 7070 Clean Water Committee & the Water and Sanitation Rotarian Action Group, Students Against Climate Change, University of Toronto

Opening Remarks by Professor Margrit Eichler, Department of Sociology and Equity Studies in Education, O.I.S.E., University of Toronto

Maude Barlow, UN Senior Advisor on Water, will be the keynote speaker. She brings her broad perspective and vast knowledge about this common substance that most of us take for granted. Ms. Barlow will be available to sign copies of her latest book, Blue Covenant.

Dr. Ron Denham, Chair, Water & Sanitation Rotarian Action Group will describe the impact of clean water and sanitation on community development and the challenges we face in meeting the UN Millennium Development Goal # 7: By 2015 reduce by 50% the proportion of people without access to safe water and sanitation.

Afternoon break-out sessions will provide a chance to explore an area of particular interest: Robert Lovelace, Paula Sherman, Co-chief Ardoch Algonquin - Indigenous Peoples' Water Concerns

Ben Powless, Sect'y of the Int'l Indigenous Peoples' Forum on Climate Change – Climate Change

Rotary Club Panel - Best Practices in Water and Sanitation projects

Paul York, Christian Penna, Allan Lissner, Sakura Saunder of Toronto Mining Support Group - Mining and Water

Lauren Acorn, UNA-Canada & Youth4Water - session especially for youth & youth workers

We will also network with local Toronto action groups involved with water issues. Confirmed organizations are: Council of Canadians, Rotary Club, Students for Bhopal, Youth4Water Ripple Effect, Students Against Climate Change/Toronto Mining Support Group, Lake Ontario Waterkeepers, Sanitation and Water Action Network, and Amnesty International BHR.


Roger Helbig said...

There is no such thing as a Depleted Uranium machine gun shell - nor was DU ever used against a civilian target. DU kinetic energy penetrators, which were fired by the A-10 aircraft depicted in the photo, were used to kill tanks in the Gulf War and in 2003. They have not been used since. There have been no enemy tanks and there is no use for DU unless you are firing at a tank. This caption and photo should be removed if this group wants to be considered to be factually oriented and not a propaganda repeater.

Roger Helbig said...

Nothing like censoring the information being given to college kids -- can't they make up their own minds after they see all the information or must you brainwash them. Let's see what you really are up to.

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