THE ONTARIO STUDENT MOVEMENT WILL NOT BE CO-OPTED

THE ONTARIO STUDENT MOVEMENT WILL NOT BE CO-OPTED

Yesterday the Canadian Federation of Students – Ontario (CFS-ON) launched a callout for a province wide student walkout on March 20th at noon. It is an interesting coincidence that they chose to initiate a callout for action on that specific date. This date and time is exactly the same as the Red Spring Day of Action which we made a public callout for on January 19th and have been actively organizing to promote on campuses across the country. Already the CFS leadership is feigning ignorance about this widely promoted campaign, admitting they didn’t try to reach out to us before announcing it. This is a dishonest and opportunistic move to co-opt and undermine what is and continues to be an independent, radical initiative of student organizers across Canada. Failing to mobilize quickly and effectively themselves, they have chosen to try and graft themselves onto the work of others. They hope to take the credit by throwing money at expensive promotion, photo ops with pictures of paid staffers and plastic mass-produced protest signs, all to go towards lobbying the politicians who keep on passing legislation to harm most students and prevent us from organizing. They will keep on pretending they have any semblance of relevance to the 500,000 students they claim to represent, the absolute majority of whom has never heard of the CFS despite funding it. This action cannot be swept aside as a misunderstanding, a miscommunication or an innocent mistake. Leadership of the group with a multi-million dollar operating budget, paid organizers and deep rooted networks among student bureaucracy knows perfectly well what events are organized by which student group across the country. The CFS exposes itself once again not only as ineffective and not useful to the student movement, but also as harmful to us all.

If they were simply useless, trying to foster professional careers in “activism” and secure jobs as staffers for political parties without repercussions for the lives of students it would be easy to ignore them. But they work to co-op, control and undermine every student initiative that is new, radical and bold. Their ossified bureaucratic apparatus is completely disconnected from the reality of most students and is incapable to represent us. They are rife with corruption and embezzlement scandals, as well as dishonest bureaucratic maneuvering instead of open political engagement. Our future is on the line and the CFS is part of the problem. The working class in Canada is facing harsh austerity attacks ratcheted up by every government and working class students are no exception to this. We are facing higher levels of debt post-graduation, if it is at all possible for some of us to afford attending school in the first place. Upon graduation we find ourselves pushed more and more into working temp jobs for capitalists taking a greater and greater share of the wealth that needs to be shared by us all. The situation is dire and therefore we need a movement that can fight and win. We need to put politics in command and build a genuine student movement led by the interests of the people who face the most oppression while making the most sacrifices and putting in the most work for everything around us to exist. We need to stop asking politicians for handouts. Instead, we need to strike as often and for as long as we need until we win major systemic changes. All the CFS can do is lobby and unsurprisingly in their 38 years of existence we have experienced 38 years of defeat. Their demands are hollow. They may sound appealing at times, but at best they pay lip service to the interests of most students they claim to represent. They call on the government to give us the right to organize, to protect student voices, for more grants less loans, and to eliminate tuition fees. But they are afraid of being bold, decisive and of fighting for these demands. Demands are not gifts to be handed down by benevolent lords but victories we must win on the streets, at our schools and at work. We will never win anything on the negotiating table not already won in struggle.

In contrast, our points of unity are explicitly political, they are not requests we make of a government that we already know would rather see us chained by our debt and dutifully working for them and the profit of their boss friends. And we are tirelessly organizing to mobilize more and more students around these:

  1. Education in the service of the people, not profit!
  2. Guaranteed paid internships for all students
  3. Abolition of tuition fees at all levels of education! Cancellation of all outstanding student debt!
  4. Barrier-free access to post-secondary education for all Indigenous people and an anti-colonial aspect to all programs!
  5. Democratic control of post-secondary institutions!

 

We have no illusions that the task of realising these demands is an easy or simple process. But we cannot afford to keep begging for scraps from the table of the ruling class and we have a plan to win our demands. Our task is to build a working-class student movement capable of exercising powerful, united student strikes. A movement that is only a part of a larger set of revolutionary forces which can demand on the negotiating table what we have already won. This is no small feat, but it is possible. The examples of Quebec in 2012 and 2015 most recently show us that we can win victories by strong, continuous resistance and working class solidarity. We do not see these experiences uncritically, but we also are not afraid to get our hands dirty and actually build a student movement that can fight.

The CFS-Ontario can definitely recognize they are at the brink of total collapse, as they cannot exist without money. And their only response is to attempt to pretend they have been at the helm of the work students across the country have been doing since January for the upcoming Red Spring actions on March 20th. We need to reject their insufficient demands and go beyond trying to prop-up the same failed strategies of the last 38 years. That union bureaucrats would stoop to grafting on to existing work speaks to their own pathetic desperation. Calling for an action to conflict with an already existing organizing efforts of many students across the country is an attempt to damage the student movement and assert their dominance in a hostile way. The government and the ruling class couldn’t have gotten better help than this – seeing a major student organization step on toes of independent, radical organizing to try to split students apart must make them really happy.

We reject any attempts to water down the politics of the student movement. We call on all of our comrades and supporters to completely abandon any kind of engagement with every CFS-aligned initiative. The student movement needs to get rid of this dead weight by building a genuinely radical resistance and organizing. We must fight knowing that it is right to rebel and it is even better to make revolution. We will continue to resist and to build a movement that can smash the current system of for-profit education and oppressive anti-people governments and we will unite the students across this country to build a new, better system in its place.

In Struggle,

Coordinating Committee of the MER-RSM

Congratulation to the PCR-RCP on the 12th Anniversary of its Founding

Congratulation to the PCR-RCP on the 12th Anniversary of its Founding

This January 25th marks the 12th anniversary of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Canada (PCR-RCP). We congratulate them on this occasion and renew our commitment to working closely with our comrades to make revolution in Canada. It was the PCR-RCP which made the initiative to call a Conference of Revolutionary Youth and Students together in 2012. This meeting was the first of several which culminated 4 years later with the creation of our organization the Revolutionary Student Movement (MER-RSM). Along the way we have been lucky to struggle alongside the PCR-RCP and appreciate the strong leadership they have offered us as well as others in making revolution. Our modest success would have been impossible without their guidance and support.

We have never made any bones about the fact we are guided by communist principles and that the end goal of our work is revolution. We recognize that we are only one part of the larger united front against the various enemies of the oppressed people and the proletariat in Canada. The united front that will defeat capitalism, settler-colonialism and imperialism in this country. The PCR-RCP is an integral part of that movement.

Today we say to our comrades Lal Salam or Red Salute and look forward to continuing the revolutionary struggle for as long as it takes to build a new world!

In Struggle,

Coordinating Committee of the MER-RSM

Ontario Students Rise Up! Red Spring is Coming

Ontario Students Rise Up! Red Spring is Coming

Ever faithful to protecting capitalist interests, the enemies of the people in the government of Ontario have struck another blow against the interests of working class students. This time, it is by increasing the cost of education through a particularly conniving scheme: first, they leaked an announcement about a 10% tuition fee decrease for the 2019-2020 school year. They even promised that tuition fees will be frozen at this level for the following year as well. However, this is a diversion from the real news. The far more significant changes are in the structure of loans through the OSAP program. As always, when we delve deeper we find that behind every such announcement, whatever the rhetoric, the goal is for the government to structure education to train a generation of workers equipped only to take on the jobs they desire to exploit us through, and be pacified both through debt and propaganda.

What are the nuts and bolts of these changes? First, the 6-month post-graduation grace period has been eliminated, making repayment process and loan interest start immediately after graduation. This will result in students being forced into deeper debt, faster than before. It will also push more students into jobs outside of their field of study. This will lead to an increase of the class divide between working class and bourgeois students: working class students bear the brunt of student debt and will not have time to pursue work in the field of their study before they are forced to pay their loans. The second change is the altering of the way available funding is calculated, with the maximum cap put on the portion of funding offered in grants to 50%. This change hits working class students the hardest, since they are predominantly low-income. Previously, the grant-to-loan ratio was scaled to income and the number of dependents an applicant has. Now, while this is still the case, those with minimal income will be saddled with a higher debt load. Ultimately, this will push working class students who have the least ability to pay for the loans to have the greatest amount of debt. These changes should remind us that our education system is constructed to serve the interests of capitalists. These changes will entrench the class divisions amongst students and hurt those of us from the working class especially hard. None of us should be so naïve as to think that any politician today can create an education service that is in our interests. But we can fight to build one both in resisting these changes in the here and now and building a movement that can fundamentally restructure society. We can build a movement that can make revolution.

In addition to these decreases, one of the other changes is the so called “Student Choice Initiative”. The choice, of course, was made for the students by this government, without asking for our permission or opinions. The aim of this initiative is to alter the rules around ancillary fees. When realized, it will direct post-secondary education institutions to let students choose to opt-out of “non-essential” fees. This will be realized in two ways:

1. Student union or association fees will be made optional. We need to remember, that outside Quebec these organizations are not democratic, accountable or connected to serving the interests of most students. Corruption scandals and toothless actions are the order of the day for most student unions across this country. But let us be clear on this: this is an issue that working class students need to solve on our own, by organizing to rebuild our student movement in our interests. Politicians need to keep their filthy hands out of our affairs! And the same goes for school administrations, constantly working to sabotage our future.

2. Other fees and levies that predominantly serve working class students will be undermined. We can think of many examples from food banks to daycare services. These fees, while “non-essential”, primarily help working class students who are in need of assistance. What this change will functionally achieve is to further privatize the provision of services that may not be essential to the school as a whole, but are certainly essential for working class students. These meager handouts are not even enough to adequately help most people in need of assistance, but the attack on it cannot be seen as anything other than an attempt by capitalists to profit further off of the misery they create for us.

Most student groups, including those on the left that oppose this tuition increase have adopted a stance of laying all of the blame on one bad man – Doug Ford, the premier of Ontario. He is certainly a bad man, but the changes we fight against aren’t the result of one man’s actions – they are a result of the governing Conservative party’s policies. But even more so, they are the result of how the Canadian state works, on the federal, provincial and municipal levels. It is the result of it serving the ruling class of the wealthiest capitalists and their interests. We do not have universal, barrier-free and accessible post-secondary education. We do not have an education system that serves the people, we only have a system where we take on a huge debt to be able to qualify as sufficiently-trained workers for the capitalist bosses. Our education system only constantly reproduces society as we know it – a society built on oppressive and outright criminal system of capitalism, colonialism and imperialism. It does not help to bring us towards a better future, towards a different kind of world. And those who cannot afford to take on education get forced into increasingly precarious, low-paying, back-breaking labor that can barely suffice for survival.

Outrage against the actions of this government is justified. However, things will not change through expressions of moral outrage and knee-jerk reactions to every terrible measure that this government announces every few weeks. Students and workers need to organize around longer-term goals instead. We need to unite in a fight for a better world, the way we want to see it. Not just be scattered and on the defensive all the time.

This government has already launched an attack on every working class person in the province, by depriving us of the small, overdue, minimum wage increase. It has attacked us by stealing the much needed guaranteed few paid sick leave days and other basic workplace necessities. In a show of adherence to colonial oppression, it has canceled all work to include the general practices, customs and traditions of Indigenous peoples in geography, history and social studies courses in both elementary and high school curriculum. It has forced our high-schools to revert back to an outdated sex-education curriculum, reversing years of improved understanding of healthier relationships. It has deprived the Francophone communities in Ontario of the funding for their education programs. There is much harm this government has done, and much more it will do.

This is why we call on all the communities, groups and individuals harmed and outraged by all these attacks on the people to join us in taking matters into our own hands. We are calling for a one-day Strike and marches on February 15th at noon. We will organize a walk-out of classes across the province, and we are looking for every bit of solidarity and support!

We aim to increase the resistance further, and we call on all the students in Ontario to join our Red Spring Day of Action on March 20th! Students across the country will mobilize for a one-day strike to shut down the schools and make the following 5 demands:

 

  1. Education in the service of the people, not profit!

Education must serve the interests of the people, not corporations and profit. Everyone needs to have access to post-secondary education. Research has to be done for the benefit of all, not the benefit of capitalists and their wars. A democratic and scientific education must replace the imperialist, settler-colonial and patriarchal curriculum. Education needs to prepare us to struggle for justice and liberation, not simply prepare us to be exploited on the job.

  1. Guaranteed paid internships for all students

Interns are workers and must be paid equally for the same work as other workers in their field. Over 300,000 interns across the country do not get proper pay. The times when employers could exploit intern workers without pay must end now!

  1. Abolition of tuition fees at all levels of education! Cancellation of all outstanding student debt!

Banks and the government keep using students as cash-cows while tuition fees and debt become unbearable for most of us. We will not be held hostage to the scam of having to give an arm and a leg for a basic necessity such as education!

  1. Barrier-free access to post-secondary education for all Indigenous people and an anti-colonial aspect to all programs!

Canada, as a settler-colonial state, is built on stolen land and the genocide of Indigenous nations. All Indigenous people must have barrier-free access to post-secondary education. We support the creation of independent faculties, colleges and universities controlled by the Indigenous people. The education system needs to foster the cultures and languages of Indigenous people within it and include mandatory anti-colonial components in all programs.

  1. Democratic control of post-secondary institutions!

Universities and colleges should be run by the people they serve, not by unelected boards of governors and administrators filled with representatives of the big banks and large corporations. We demand the abolition of boards of governors. Instead, schools must be run by committees elected at a general assembly composed of students, faculty, support staff, and members of the community.

 

We can fight and we will fight, but in order to win it is not enough to just push back against the harmful changes constantly being hurled at us before we can effectively organize to resist. The only way we can hope to win is by building a movement of students and workers capable of putting up a fight. This movement will grow in each and every struggle until we have realized a world where education serves the people, not profit and where the governing rules of society are not exploitation and oppression, but mutual support and solidarity among the working class. In order to achieve this, we need to end capitalism and the capitalist education system. Today, this means gathering together and striking back.

On February 15th join us across Ontario and on March 20th join us coast to coast to coast. Let us be the spark to start a prairie fire and burn down this old system, clearing the way for a new one to grow!

 

No fees, no debt, no barriers to education!

Dare to struggle – dare to win!

Coordinating Committee of the MER-RSM

For more information about getting involved, email: info@mer-rsm.ca

Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RevolutionaryStudentMovement/

 

RED SPRING IS COMING: LET’S SHUT THE SCHOOLS DOWN ON MARCH 20TH!

RED SPRING IS COMING: LET’S SHUT THE SCHOOLS DOWN ON MARCH 20TH!

As we sit in the depths of winter, the many hardships that working class students are faced with seem to have no end in sight, and only get worse as time goes by. But as spring comes to replace this difficult season, so too will the masses rise in defiance to bring about change! It’s time to turn the spring red with the fury of students! For too long we have been forced into a crushing debt, only to be pushed into a world of precarious jobs and unemployment after graduation. For too long we have been denied control over our own education and future. Nevertheless, there is a way to build a better tomorrow: we can organize, resist and fight for a better world! Governments and school administrations can no longer be allowed to keep robbing us through unbearable fees and loans with no repercussions.  We will take control and ownership over our own education, instead of being treated both as clients that need to pay or get out, and obedient subordinates to an education system created without our involvement. We will support national self-determination struggles of all Indigenous people across this part of Turtle Island against the long history of colonial oppression, which must end now. We can and will take action to make this clear. We won’t let the capitalists and their government lapdogs sabotage our future for profit anymore. We will not stop until we win!

The Revolutionary Student Movement has long been at the forefront of struggles against the evils of capitalism, colonialism, patriarchy, racism, imperialist wars, destruction of the environment and more. We are once again staging a coordinated action across the country. In the spring of 2015 we acted in solidarity with the striking Quebec students and mobilized across the country for a Red Spring, to build a wider, more combative student movement. This year, we are launching a series of coordinated actions across the country to grow our resistance further!

We call on all of our comrades, supporters, and anyone who finds this call to action to resonate with them to join us in organizing for a shutdown of every school across Canada this March 20th! At noon local time – walk out of your class and join the actions on your campus! Let us unite into a force to be reckoned with! Let us make this spring a Red Spring of combative resistance, solidarity and change!

We organize with broad, yet clear, political demands. We do not need to do the work of the government and school administrations for them in figuring out how exactly to meet these. Other student groups have been producing detailed plans and fruitlessly lobbying hundreds of politicians for decades, and we are not interested in going down this dead-end path. We are angry and we will not stop until we win.

 

Our 5 core demands are:

  1. Education in the service of the people, not profit!

Education must serve the interests of the people, not corporations and profit. Everyone needs to have access to post-secondary education. Research has to be done for the benefit of all, not the benefit of capitalists and their wars. A democratic and scientific education must replace the imperialist, settler-colonial and patriarchal curriculum. Education needs to prepare us to struggle for justice and liberation, not simply prepare us to be exploited on the job.

  1. Guaranteed paid internships for all students

Interns are workers and must be paid equally for the same work as other workers in their field. Over 300,000 interns across the country do not get proper pay. The times when employers could exploit intern workers without pay must end now!

  1. Abolition of tuition fees at all levels of education! Cancellation of all outstanding student debt!

Banks and the government keep using students as cash-cows while tuition fees and debt become unbearable for most of us. We will not be held hostage to the scam of having to give an arm and a leg for a basic necessity such as education!

  1. Barrier-free access to post-secondary education for all Indigenous people and an anti-colonial aspect to all programs!

Canada, as a settler-colonial state, is built on stolen land and the genocide of Indigenous nations. All Indigenous people must have barrier-free access to post-secondary education. We support the creation of independent faculties, colleges and universities controlled by the Indigenous people. The education system needs to foster the cultures and languages of Indigenous people within it and include mandatory anti-colonial components in all programs.

  1. Democratic control of post-secondary institutions!

Universities and colleges should be run by the people they serve, not by unelected boards of governors and administrators filled with representatives of the big banks and large corporations. We demand the abolition of boards of governors. Instead, schools must be run by committees elected at a general assembly composed of students, faculty, support staff, and members of the community.

 

While these demands are more radical than the demands of any other progressive student group, we do not see them as end-goals in and of themselves. We believe that we need to grow the power of the masses to change the root causes of the hardships most people around us suffer from today. To us, these root causes are: capitalism, colonialism and imperialism. They shape the main aspects of the world around us. Protests and walk-outs to disrupt the usual order of things at schools is just the beginning. We are organizing towards a country-wide student strike in the coming years, because strikes are one of the most powerful tools we have in fighting for our interests. But even that is not the end goal our organizing. We don’t stop when the demands we are fighting for are met. We will continue to organize until the root-causes of most of our problems and hardships will be eliminated: when we make Revolution, united with all the revolutionary forces across society, and achieve a genuine socialist society. Only then can all of us be truly free.

This may sound like a long way from where we are all today, so where should we start? It all starts from students organizing to fight back against the rotten capitalist education system as it currently stands. Come out to organizing meetings on your campus, reach out to us if you want to organize them, spread the word – we need to rise up together, so we can win together!

No fees, no debt, no barriers to education!

Dare to struggle – dare to win!

In Struggle,
Coordinating Committee of the MER-RSM

 

For more information about getting involved, email: info@mer-rsm.ca

Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RevolutionaryStudentMovement/

No Free Speech for Enemies of the People

No Free Speech for Enemies of the People

Since coming to power in June of 2018, the reactionary Ford government in the province of Ontario has been leading a relentless attack against all the progressive values that the people have fought hard to secure for decades. It represents the deepening of reactionary politics in Ontario which is part of an international trend towards reaction. Cutting the funding for necessary social services, canceling the $15 minimum wage increase, scrapping the work to include the history of genocide inflicted upon Indigenous nations (specifically through Residential Schools), and reversing positive changes to the sex-education high school curriculum. Now they are shielding the extreme right from justified protests against their attempts to spread their vile messages. The conservatives have laid bare the nature of bourgeois politicians, enemies of every progressive aspect of society. At every turn they attack and attempt to reverse the gains that the workers, Indigenous people, women, racially oppressed, and LGBTQ people have fought so hard to achieve.

These attacks will not be met with silence and tolerance – just like there can be no silence and tolerance of racist, sexist and other extreme right views on and off campuses! Already mass protests are happening. On September 21st, thousands of students all across Ontario high schools have organized a walk-out against the attack on the progressive sex education. Smaller protests have begun and will surely multiply in coming months. No bourgeois party can or will end the system of capitalism, colonialism and imperialism in Canada. It is clear that under the conservatives attacks on the people will become stronger, and therefore the resistance we need to put up has to become fiercer in response.

The Revolutionary Student Movement has a long tradition of organizing and boosting events and actions aimed at shutting down extreme-right reactionary events from taking place, both on and off campuses. Many events that the so-called “men’s rights activists” have tried holding across the country have consistently been disrupted and shut down by our organizing, making it impossible for them to take root on campuses, gain legitimacy and increase their ranks. Similarly, we have supported protests against Jordan Peterson’s misogynist, trans-antagonistic speeches. And we have always supported confronting fascist and other extreme-right organizing in the streets across the country.

The new push for legislation to develop campus-based free speech policy is a clear attempt to make it easier for abhorrent reactionary views that get confronted by the masses to be promoted at universities. The rightful backlash against those who promote and organize around such views is now at risk of being further restricted, with heavier penalties for individuals and groups who stand up to oppose them. Ironically, the new free speech rules are aimed at shielding and sheltering the despicable organizers of reactionary events from facing the appropriate response from the public. They should be continuously taught what the people think about their opinions when those are brought out in the open, instead of being allowed to exist in an academic bubble free from consequences. After all, spreading their messages has consequences, as exemplified by the current Ontario government, where they now have powerful allies.

We commit to continue organizing in the combative and militant spirit we have always had. We call on all of our comrades and supporters to organize with renewed energy and vigor and take part in events and actions to resist the reactionary attacks by the Ontario government against the people. We must do all we can to help unleash the power of the masses to oppose it effectively!

No shelter for reactionaries!

It is right to rebel, but better to make revolution!

 

 

In struggle,

Coordinating Committee of the MER-RSM

We Say Yes to BDS at UOttawa!

We Say Yes to BDS at UOttawa!

The Israeli colonization project is causing untold suffering to the Palestinian people. Families are losing their land and livelihoods as the military and illegal settlers swoop in; adults and children alike beaten, jailed or even killed simply for trying to resist dispossession; and Palestinian society becomes fragmented as their territory gets divided into enclaves separated by checkpoints and illegal colonies, while millions of Palestinians continue to live abroad in refugee camps, unable to return to their homeland.

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign was started by Palestinian civil society groups as a means to put pressure on both state and private actors who play a hand in the colonization process. Inspired by the successful boycott campaign that helped put an end to South African apartheid in the 1980s, it seeks to expose those companies and other institutions that enable Israel’s military and make them turn their back on this vicious operation.

Israel currently benefits from an unfair power balance over Palestine, due to its multi-billion dollar support coming from the US government, its alliance with NATO and partnership with multiple transnational corporations. As a result, fair dialogue is impossible and Israel continues to invade and occupy Palestine in spite of all international condemnations.

The Revolutionary Student Movement (RSM) opposes all imperialist and colonial forces, and it is our responsibility to show solidarity with national liberation movements across the world. Full liberation can only be achieved when the Palestinian people are able to wage resistance strong enough to put an end to the Zionist settler-colonial project. In the spirit of internationalism, we aim to end the support that the capitalist, settler-colonial, imperialist Canadian state gives to Israel. We do this in an effort to remove as many barriers as we can for the just struggle for national liberation that the Palestinian people wage.

The call for BDS is supported by hundreds of schools, unions, artists and other groups across the world, resulting in a growing withdrawal of financial, academic and cultural support for Israel. The Israeli state is pouring billions to oppose BDS worldwide, even calling for the criminalization of BDS proponents, and thus proving it is an effective measure. The Canadian government and parliament formally support the Zionist oppression of the Palestinian people, adopting an outrageous resolution in 2016 to condemn any and all attempts by Canadian groups or individuals to promote the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, which it describes as promoting the “demonization and delegitimization” of Israel.

This is why the RSM UOttawa is bringing forward a motion to the upcoming General Assembly to make the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) endorse the BDS campaign. We have joined forces with the Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) and Independent Jewish Voices (Ottawa/Carleton University) to mobilize as much support as we can for BDS to be adopted at UOttawa.

The General Assembly will take place Tuesday, March 13 at 6:30PM in the Alumni Auditorium, UCU building.

Let’s bring BDS to UOttawa and show our solidarity with the struggle for national liberation of the Palestinian people!

From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!

 

Say Yes to BDS! | Dites Oui au BDS! Facebook event

Our email: uottawa@mer-rsm.ca

Remove the Aung San Suu Kyi Mural!

Remove the Aung San Suu Kyi Mural!

At present, close to a million Rohingya Muslims have been driven out of Burma and into refugee camps in Bangladesh as a result of deliberate ethnic cleansing by the Burmese army. While the plight of Rohingya Muslims has deep historical roots, the sudden upsurge in violence has been qualitatively different from anything in recent decades. Under the context of the legacy of British colonialism, and under the pretext of cracking down on radical Muslim insurgency, the government of Myanmar has unleashed a highly organized and systematic persecution of Rohingya Muslims from their lands in what has been described as by the UN Human Rights High Commissioner as “a textbook case of ethnic cleansing”. Consequently, entire Rohingya villages have been burned down, civilians are massacred, raped, and brutalized indiscriminately, and hundreds upon thousands of people are being forcibly displaced from their homes.

 

Despite the overwhelming evidence of human rights violations reported, Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize winner and head of the civilian government in Myanmar, has explicitly denied the existence of the genocidal campaign currently unfolding against Rohingya Muslims. Aung San Suu Kyi, a long beloved puppet of Western imperialism, praised for her ‘civil courage’ and dedication to ‘western liberal values’, has effectively shown her true colours as a genocidal collaborationist.

 

The Revolutionary Student Movement, an organization that stands against all forms of oppression, adamantly denounces the figure of Aung San Suu Kyi for her role in the ongoing crimes against Rohingya Muslims. We categorically reject the appraisal and normalization of any and all leaders that legitimize or are responsible for the systemic oppression of ethnic and religious minorities.

 

Given our current political context, where Islamophobic tendencies are slowly being normalized and tolerated despite the very real danger that it poses to Muslim communities in Canada, it is doubly critical that we actively challenge and denounce it wherever it rears its ugly head. There are stark similarities between the Islamophobic campaign being carried out in Burma against the Rohingya, such as the 969 Movement, which claims to be defenders of their nation’s ethnic purity and religious values, and the various Islamophobic groups such as the Soldiers of Odin, the Proud Boys, and the Northern Guards that are spearheading the normalization of hatred towards Muslims communities in Canada. The violence currently experienced by Rohingya Muslims did not emerge from a vacuum. It is the consequence of decades, if not centuries of systematic marginalization, exclusion and oppression by the Burmese ethnic and religious majority. We are experiencing a similar phenomenon in Canada and we must therefore combat it before it further amplifies, lest similar horrors happen here too.

 

As such, we demand that CUSA removes the Aung San Suu Kyi mural located in the tunnels near the University Center and replace it with a mural that promotes solidarity and equality between all ethnicities and religious creeds. There is no space on our campus for the appraisal of Islamophobes and apologists of ethnic cleansing. Furthermore, we urge Carleton students to join us in demanding that the administration revokes Aung San Suu Kyi’s honorary degree given to her by the University in 2011. We also demand that the administration explicitly condemn Aung San Suu Kyi’s position towards the crimes being committed against Rohingya Muslims.

Revolutionary Student Movement Carleton Chapter

Resolutions of the Sixth Congress of the Revolutionary Student Movement

Resolutions of the Sixth Congress of the Revolutionary Student Movement

 

  1. CEGEP/College Expansion

The MER-RSM Coordinating Committee will produce a general plan to intervene into CEGEPs or colleges that can provide guidance for local sections to intervene in institutions in their areas.

Be it further resolved that this plan provide a strategy given the perceived limitations within these institutions that would make organizing in these institutions dissimilar from our experience in universities. This should be achieved through gathering information from the experience of the MER-RSM members currently or historically in CEGEPs or colleges.

Be it further resolved that this plan be available to MER-RSM members by August 18th, 2017 to provide ample time to plan interventions for the beginning of the fall semester.

Be it further resolved that where sections exist in the same area of a CEGEP or College where the MER-RSM does not have a presence, that those sections be mandated to engage in preliminary social investigation where capacity exists – up to and including the initiation of a new section.

  1. Ideological Advancement

The MER-RSM Coordinating Committee will develop a reading list for sections and members who have finished the basics course, and ensure that courses are accessible upon the organization’s website.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee compile a recommended reading list for both the basics and advanced course, and ensure that courses are accessible upon the organization’s website.

  1. General Assembly Campaign Propaganda

The MER-RSM Coordinating Committee will centralize all of the propaganda materials from previous General Assemblies campaigns and make them accessible to all sections.

Be it further resolved that the Coordinating Committee create propaganda specific for General Assemblies campaigns.

 

  1. Plan for starting the Transformative Justice Committee.

The MER-RSM Coordinating Committee is tasked with providing an open mechanism for MER-RSM members or people in our periphery to launch complaints against members that may have engaged in patriarchal, transphobic, racist, ableist, etc. behaviour or violence, which includes a process of investigation, mediation and rectification.

Be it further resolved that upon receiving a complaint that the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee strike an Ad Hoc Transformative Justice Committee, of members of the Coordinating Committee and the MER-RSM members that are not directly tied to the incident presented, to investigate the complaint, and proceed forward with a rectification process if necessary.

Be it further resolved that a list of comrades that would be willing to act for the Transformative Justice Committee be compiled along with a list of their relevant skills.

Be it further resolved that a list of resources be created to aid in the work of both the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee and Transformative Justice Committee going forward in this matter. This list should also be made available to leadership of every section.
Be it further resolved that any member of the MER-RSM who has a complaint that they wish to be investigated by the Transformative Justice Committee and Coordinating Committee has the right to contact their regional organizer or any Coordinating Committee member; to be represented by another member if they wish, and to have that complaint dealt with as soon as possible. Should the complainant be in an emergency situation, the Transformative Justice Committee and Coordinating Committee should provide as much support as possible.

  1. Regional Events for 2018

Be it resolved that for the 2017-2018 school year regional organizers are tasked with holding regional events of either a political, organizational or social character.

Be it further resolved that the next Pan-Canadian MER-RSM Congress be held in 2019.

Peterborough delegation has offered to host the next regional event and potentially the next Congress.

  1. Financial Motion

Be it resolved that all sections of the MER-RSM take on fundraising initiatives and aim to apply for institutional funding wherever possible.

  1. Publication

Be it resolved that each section commits to preparing at least one article per issue for the publication before the next congress.

Be it further resolved that the publication produce an issue at least once a year.

  1. CAFE

Coordinating Committee of MER-RSM will produce guidelines on how to oppose CAFE and other MRA organizing with the goal of shutting such organizing down.
Be it further resolved that Coordinating Committee of MER-RSM produce propaganda for all sections organizing to oppose CAFE and other MRA groups. Likewise, sections currently engaged in anti-MRA work should centralize existing propaganda.

 

  1. Proletarian Education

Be it resolved that the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee be tasked with synthesizing an analysis of what proletarian education is to look like and what a proletarian student is.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee be tasked with seeking input from sections on these political questions.

  1. Gender Oppressed Worker’s Day

The MER-RSM sections will hold events on March 8th under the banner of Gender Oppressed Worker’s Day, and promote a celebration of Proletarian Feminism and revolutionary gender oppressed people.

  1. Solidarity with International League of People’s Struggles

The MER-RSM affirms our solidarity with member organizations of ILPS, where appropriate, in order to strengthen and concretize our international solidarity work.

 

  1. Strategic Plan of the MER-RSM

The MER-RSM affirms that the organization of proletarian students, and building towards revolution in Canada is its primary goal.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM adopt, as its immediate strategic orientation, the achievement of general assemblies with an eye towards organizing strikes.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM adopts the following general plan of action:

  1. MER-RSM sections should, where possible, campaign for the creation of General Assemblies, in which every student gets a vote and can initiate motions, as the highest decision making body of their respective student organizations. This includes but is not limited to unions, federations and associations.
  2. Due to the contours of student politics in English Canada, MER-RSM sections should initially work towards campus-wide General Assemblies.
  3. Once General Assemblies have been won within a student organization, MER-RSM sections should work towards program or faculty level General Assemblies.
  4. Campaigns for General Assemblies should take on a life and organizational form independent from the MER-RSM, but remains connected to and led politically by the MER-RSM.
  5. When General Assemblies have been achieved, MER-RSM sections should initiate controversial left-wing motions in order to build quorum and hype around the General Assemblies. This can include things like abolishing the student union council, condemning the occupation of Afghanistan, or other issues which will serve to separate the advanced and intermediate from the backwards.
  6. As soon as possible, MER-RSM sections should put forward motions to hold a one day strike putting forward demands based on the 2015 Red Spring Day of Action as a basic program.
  7. As more MER-RSM sections are able to organize strikes, MER-RSM sections should begin to coordinate with each other to hold strikes on the same days. This can continue to expand and grow in scale.
  8. The strategic goal of this process is the holding of an unlimited student strike across Canada, in which the RSM is a leading political force.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM affirms that this is not a stagist conception of revolution, where at the end of this process revolution will spontaneously emerge. Instead, the RSM should understand this process as a strategy which will train and attract cadre and build capacity.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM at no point in this process stop engaging in independent, anti-capitalist and revolutionary propaganda. Nor should the MER-RSM ever liquidate itself into the general movement, and should instead constantly advance its own promises and positions even while leading campaigns of lower political unity.

Be it further resolved that the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee should begin looking towards the creation of a short general program of promises, which touches on the immediate needs of proletarian and oppressed students. This program should form the basis of the demands advanced during strikes. It should concretize the political positions of the MER-RSM Coordinating Committee.

  1. Consolidation of Organizational Documents

The MER-RSM Coordinating Committee consolidate all our documents in French and English relating to methods of organization and how to conduct ourselves. These documents should then be translated and distributed to every section and also made available to new sections and organizers as necessary.

Be it further resolved that this should take the form of a package that includes checklists for different kinds of events as well as guidelines for weekly meetings and also all report templates. In addition to this material any documents already in circulation should be included.

 

  1. Solidarity with RSM Sudbury in the face of State Repression

The MER-RSM condemns the Sudbury Police and Ontario Provincial Police for their actions against RSM Sudbury.

The entire MER-RSM stands in solidarity with RSM Sudbury during this difficult time, and we offer them any assistance they deem necessary to continue the good work they are doing in Sudbury.

 

  1. Solidarity with Igor Sadikov

The MER-RSM stands in full solidarity with Igor Sadikov against Zionist attacks, and we uphold his critique of Zionism.

Déclaration sur le départ de la section de Montréal (Statement On the Departure of the Montreal Section)

Déclaration sur le départ de la section de Montréal (Statement On the Departure of the Montreal Section)

Déclaration sur le départ de la section de Montréal du Mouvement Étudiant Révolutionnaire

[English to Follow] 

Nous, le Comité de Coordination du MER-RSM, sommes déçu.es de voir la déclaration récente du MER Montréal annonçant leur départ de notre organisation. Bien que nous soyons déçu.es, nous ne sommes pas surpris.es: leur déclaration survient dans une suite d’évènement dont; la démission des membres du MER Montréal du Comité de coordination, des mois de non-communication avec le Comité de coordination et un manque de participation à la vie du MER-RSM pancanadien. En effet, le MER Montréal est allé jusqu’à ne pas assister au récent Congrès du MER-RSM, malgré le fait qu’initialement ils/elles s’étaient porté.es volontaire pour que celui-ci ait lieu à Montréal. C’est dans ce contexte que le Comité de coordination a envoyé un appel final au MER Montréal, qui stipulait que leur adhésion à l’organisation serait résiliée si ils/elles ne reprenaient pas contact avec le Comité de coordination. Au lieu de lutter sur les désaccords politiques avec le reste du MER-RSM, le MER Montréal a choisi d’annoncer son retrait.

Il y a de nombreux aspects de la déclaration du MER Montréal qui, selon nous, sont contestabless, nous tenons à  nous  concentrer à soulever les différents politiques. Principalement, ces différents sont: le rejet de la nécessité d’organisations de masse indépendantes et leurs critiques mal avisées du Sixième Congrès du MER-RSM, qui a eu lieu à Ottawa en février

Le MER Montréal n’est pas d’accord avec l’importance de l’indépendance des organisations de masse et intermédiaires. Ils/elles soutiennent leurs critiques en pointant vers un article de la revue Arsenal, le journal théorique du PCR-RCP, et en suggérant que de permettre des initiatives indépendantes des masses équivaut à liquider l’importance d’un parti, et même de la révolution. Nous sommes fermement en désaccord avec cette critique: nous pensons qu’un mouvement révolutionnaire robuste doit engager la société sur de multiple niveaux, y compris au niveau intermédiaire et des masses, à l’aide d’organisations de masse et intermédiaires travaillant aux côtés d’organisations au niveau du parti.

Nous soulignons l’importance de l’indépendance des organisations  de masse et intermédiaire, et de leurs propres structures démocratiques internes: nous pensons qu’un aspect crucial de la ligne de masse est de faire confiance aux masses pour gérer leur travail. Le MER-RSM doit maintenir son indépendance organisationnelle, plutôt que d’agir simplement comme un appendice directement sous le contrôle organisationnel du PCR-RCP. Nous sommes attristé.es de voir le MER Montréal rejeter la ligne de masse et adopter comme pratique une caricature d’organisation d’avant-garde qui substitue le leadership politique par un leadership bureaucratique.

Le MER Montréal a fait trois critiques principales du sixième Congrès du MER-RSM. Avant de s’engager dans ces critiques, nous voulons souligner l’absence du MER Montréal au dernier Congrès, ce qui fait que beaucoup de ces critiques proviennent d’une position d’ignorance relative. Bien que nous aurions dû  être plus proactifs pour publier diffuser l’intégralité des motions adoptées sur le site Web du MER-RSM. Cependant, le MER Montreal aurait trouvé les réponses à beaucoup de leurs questions dans le «Rapport» qui a été publié peu de temps après la clôture du Congrès. En gardant ceci en tête, le MER Montréal critique les deux éléments suivants: l’accent “inutile” mis sur les assemblées générales, la substitution de la Journée Internationale des travailleuses par la «Journée des travailleurs/euses de genre opprimé» et la taille du Congrès.

Nous trouvons étrange que le MER Montréal soit en désaccord avec la campagne pour les Assemblées générales, étant donné que celle-ci a été suggérée pour la première fois par un camarade de Montréal lors du premier congrès du MER-RSM en 2012. Cependant, nous sommes de l’avis que la critique considérant cette campagne comme étant apparemment “inutile” est de mauvaise foi. Le MER-RSM a toujours avancé la notion que les AG ne sont pas une fin en soi, mais plutôt un forum dans lequel la lutte des classes est possible. Ainsi, afin de favoriser la lutte des classes sur les campus, nous avons créé et tentons de créer des AG là où elles n’existent pas. À leur tour, les AG sont un outil permettant d’entreprendre des grèves étudiantes, et qui de par l’augmentation du niveau de militance et de la lutte à travers le Canada, contribuera à créer une génération de militant.es et les conditions pour la révolution.

De plus, dans les contextes où les AG existent déjà (comme au Québec!), les camarades ne sont pas tenu.es de s’engager dans ce type de pratique. Nous avons toujours été clairs sur cette conception stratégique aussi bien dans les motions présentées aux congrès du MER-RSM, que dans nos documents. En effet, si le MER Montréal avait lu le «Rapport» publié après le Sixième Congrès du MER-RSM, ils/elles auraient trouvé cette même conception répétée ci-haut. Alors que le MER Montréal peut être en désaccord avec cette orientation stratégique (notons bien, que jamais celui-ci fut ouvertement manifesté au MER-RSM), il est malhonnête d’affirmer que l’objectif de la campagne des AG n’est pas clair.

Le MER Montréal a aussi critiqué le MER-RSM pour avoir appelé à une «Journée des travailleurs/euses de genre opprimé» le 8 mars, plutôt que la traditionnelle «Journée internationale des travailleuses». Nous sommes en désaccord pour dire que cela constitue l’abandon de 100 ans de lutte des femmes de la classe ouvrière pour leur émancipation. Nous ne pensons pas que l’inclusion des femmes trans et des prolétaires non binaires mine la lutte pour l’égalité entre les genres et ne porte pas atteinte à la lutte pour la révolution. Notons qu’il y a eu un débat considérable sur cette motion au Congrès, soulignons également qu’en ne participant pas au Congrès, le MER Montréal a négligé leur devoir de s’engager dans une lutte de ligne avec leurs camarades sur une question importante qui était clairement controversée.

Enfin, le MER Montréal essaie de justifier leur attitude distante parprise de distance  relevant un supposé déclin de la taille du MER-RSM ppan-canadien. S’il est vrai qu’il y a eu moins de participant.es au congrès du MER-RSM cette année que par le passé, mais ceci n’a rien à voir avec la taille du MER-RSM. En fait, le MER Montréal n’a pu constater cette diminution de participant.es, que puisque le MER-RSM est maintenant trop grand et largement répandu à travers le Canada, pour qu’il soit possible de rassembler tous les membres pour chaque Congrès. C’est pourquoi, nous avons pour les deux derniers congrès, utilisé un système de délégation plutôt que d’accueillir d’inviter tou.tes les participant.es. En fait, si le MER Montréal avait assisté au Congrès, ils/elles auraient découvert que le MER-RSM était plus grand que jamais,  et ce même si les membres de MER Montréal ne sont pas inclus.es dans le total.

Le Comité de coordination est déçu que le MER Montréal ait annoncé leur départ du MER-RSM pan-canadien. Cependant, pour toutes les critiques faites par le MER Montréal, nous voulons noter que pas une seule fois ces critiques n’ont été soumises à l’interne au MER-RSM, ni aux Congrès pour que celles-ci soient discutées de manière ouverte et démocratique. Le MER Montréal a abandonné sa responsabilité de lutter avec  ses camarades. Dans la mesure où le MER-RSM défend l’importance de la lutte politique, le MER Montréal s’en écarte, le Comité de coordination voit le départ du MER Montréal comme un revers temporaire pour le MER-RSM dans une seule ville. Nous reprendrons bientôt nos activités à Montréal et continuerons de contribuer au mouvement révolutionnaire au Canada et au Québec.

Nous invitons tou.te personne à Montréal intéressée à nous aider à reconstruire le MER-RSM à nous contacter.

Statement On the Departure of the Montreal Section of the Revolutionary Student Movement

We, the RSM Coordinating Committee, are disappointed to see the recent statement of the MER Montreal announcing their departure from the broader organization. While we are disappointed, we are not surprised: their statement follows the resignation of MER Montreal members from the Coordinating Committee, months of non-communication with the Coordinating Committee, and a lack of participation in the life of the broader RSM. Indeed, the MER went as far as to not attend the recent RSM Congress, despite initially volunteering to host it in Montreal. It was in this context that the Coordinating Committee sent a final appeal to the MER Montreal, which stipulated that their membership would be terminated if they did not resume communication with the Coordinating Committee. Instead of struggling with the rest of the RSM over political disagreements, the MER Montreal chose to announce their resignation.

There are many aspects of the statement made by the MER Montreal which we find objectionable. However, we want to highlight the political differences. Chiefly, these differences are: a rejection of the need for independent mass organizations, and misplaced criticisms of the Sixth Congress of the RSM, held in Ottawa in February.

MER Montreal disagrees with the importance of independent mass and intermediate organizations. They make their criticism by pointing to an article in the PCR-RCP’s theoretical journal Arsenal, and by suggesting that to allow for independent mass initiatives is to liquidate the importance of a Party or even more broadly, revolution. We clearly disagree with this criticism: we think that a robust revolutionary movement engages society on multiple levels, including on the mass and intermediate levels, with mass and intermediate organizations working alongside party-level organizations. We uphold the importance of independent mass and intermediate organizations with their own internal democratic structures: we think that a crucial aspect of the mass line is to trust the masses to run their own affairs. The RSM should maintain its organizational independence, rather than acting simply as an appendage directly under the organizational control of the PCR-RCP. We are sad to see the MER Montreal reject the mass line, and adopt as their practice a caricature of vanguard-style organizing which substitutes political leadership for bureaucratic leadership.

MER Montreal has levelled three main criticisms of the Sixth RSM Congress. Before engaging with these criticisms, we want to highlight that the MER did not attend the Congress, and so makes many of these criticisms from a position of relative ignorance. While we should have been more pro-active about posting the full text of the adopted motions on the RSM web site, MER Montreal would have found the answers to many of their questions in the “Reportback” which was posted shortly after the Congress ended. With that in mind, the MER Montreal criticizes: the apparently “pointless” focus on General Assemblies, renaming IWWD to “Gender Oppressed Workers Day”, and the size of the Congress.

We find it strange that the MER Montreal would take issue with the General Assembly campaign, considering that it was first suggested by a comrade from Montreal at the first RSM Congress in 2012. However, we think that the criticism of GAs being apparently “pointless” is a criticism made in bad faith. The RSM has always put forward the notion that GAs are not an end in-and-of themselves, but rather serve as a forum in which class struggle is possible. Thus, as a means of furthering class struggle on campuses, we have attempted to create GAs where they do not exist. In turn, the GAs are to build towards student strikes, which by raising the level of militancy and struggle across Canada, will help create a generation of militants and the conditions for revolution. Furthermore, in contexts where GAs already existed (such as in Quebec!), comrades were not required to engage in this type of practice. We have always been clear about this general strategic conception in the motions presented to RSM Congresses, as well as in our documents. Indeed, had the MER Montreal read the “Reportback” issued after the Sixth RSM Congress, they would have found this same conception repeated there. While the MER Montreal may disagree with this strategic orientation (though we should note, never openly within the RSM), it is dishonest to say that the point of the GA campaigns is unclear.

MER Montreal criticized the RSM for calling for a “Gender Oppressed Workers’ Day” on March 8th, rather than the traditional “International Working Women’s Day.” We disagree that this constitutes an abandonment of 100 years of struggle of working-class women for their emancipation. We do not feel as though the inclusion of trans women and non-binary proletarians undermines the struggle for gender equality, nor does it undermine the struggle for revolution. While we note that there was considerable debate on this motion at the Congress, we also note that by not attending, MER Montreal neglected to struggle with their comrades on an issue which was clearly controversial and important.

Finally, the MER Montreal attempts to justify their aloofness by pointing to the supposed decline in size of the broader RSM. While it is true that there were fewer attendees at the RSM Congress this year than in the past, that has nothing to do with the size of the broader RSM. Indeed, and MER Montreal was aware of this, it was because the RSM is now too large and wide-spread for it to be feasible to bring everyone together for every Congress. As such, we have for the last two Congresses, used a delegation system rather than having everyone attend. In fact, had MER Montreal attended the RSM Congress, they would have discovered that the RSM is larger than ever, even when members of MER Montreal are not included in the total.

The Coordinating Committee is disappointed that MER Montreal has announced their departure from the broader RSM. However, for all of the criticisms that MER Montreal makes, we want to note that not once were any of these criticisms brought up internal to the RSM, nor at RSM Congresses, to be discussed in an open and democratic manner. MER Montreal has abandoned their responsibility to struggle with their comrades. Where the broader RSM upholds the importance of political struggle, MER Montreal backs away from it. With this in mind, the Coordinating Committee sees the departure of MER Montreal as only a temporary setback for the RSM in a single city. We will resume activity in Montreal shortly, and will continue to contribute to the broader revolutionary movement across Canada and Quebec.

If anyone in Montreal is interested in helping to rebuild the RSM, we welcome you to get in touch with us.

Report Back from the 6th Congress of the MER-RSM

Report Back from the 6th Congress of the MER-RSM

On February 18-19 the MER-RSM has held its 6th Pan-Canadian Congress. Delegates from 14 sections from across the country came to Ottawa to decide on the course of our organization, share organizing experience and reaffirm our commitment to pushing the class struggle forward wherever we organize! Realizing the resolution from the 5th Congress to consolidate and build roots, most of our sections have grown, with some doubling their membership numbers. The MER-RSM remains the largest anti-capitalist student movement in Canada, and we will keep organizing to expand our reach and grow in places where sections are established.

Coming out of this Congress, we have set out clear plans for moving forward. The main short term goal of all MER-RSM sections in English Canada is to work to create general assemblies (GAs) on campuses, in order to make students the highest decision making body in student organizations such as unions, associations and federations. Several sections are already engaged in GA campaigns and plan to intensify their work over the coming weeks. The Congress made explicit another reason to struggle for general assemblies, the ability to build towards an unlimited student strike, in which revolutionary politics will be the leading force. This task is in furthering the commitment of the MER-RSM to build towards a revolution in Canada. To help facilitate section’s struggle for GAs, the Coordinating Committee (CoCo) of the MER-RSM will centralize propaganda and analysis from successful campaigns, and from this develop new materials to aid in the spread of direct democratic student leadership through General Assembly.

The Congress also decided to change the way we view our Transformative Justice Committee (TJC). Initially called for at the 2014 Congress in Quebec City, the committee has been slow to materialize. To rectify this the 6th Congress set out a new plan for an ad-hoc TJC to address complaints against MER-RSM members that may have engaged in patriarchal, transphobic, racist, ableist, etc. behaviour or violence. The mandate of TJC includes a process of investigation, mediation and rectification. All comrades interested in acting for the TJC when the need arises are encouraged to get in touch with the CoCo via their Regional Organizer. In addition, the CoCo will create a list of resources to aid in the work of the TJC and make this list available to the leadership of every section. Any member of the MER-RSM or its periphery who has a complaint that they wish to be investigated by the TJC and CoCo has the right to contact their regional organizer or any Coordinating Committee member and to have that complaint dealt with as soon as possible. We will take all complaints with the attention and seriousness they deserve. Through this mechanism the MER-RSM will realize its commitment to maintaining internally a strong LGBTQ2SIAP+-inclusive, and proletarian feminist culture in both word and action

To advance these same politics externally we will implement the two following resolutions. The Congress directed that wherever possible sections to hold events this upcoming March 8th under the banner of Gender Oppressed Worker’s Day, and to promote a celebration of Proletarian Feminism and revolutionary gender oppressed people. In addition, the MER-RSM will intensify our opposition, in the coming years, to Canadian Association for Equality and other “Men’s Rights Activist” organizing. To guide this the CoCo will centralize and produce guidelines and propaganda for campaigns and actions against these reactionaries.

Other decisions focused on strengthening our organizing locally and further improving our propaganda materials. In the coming year CoCo will produce a plan for organizing at CEGEPs and Colleges, this will expand our organizing in this crucial site of struggle beyond the single section currently at Algonquin College. Also the CoCo will also develop recommended basics and advanced reading lists for the ideological advancement of members and will make these courses accessible on the MER-RSM website.

In fostering a culture of revolution in Canadian schools, the CoCo presented the draft of the first MER-RSM publication – “Classmates”. After discussion and feedback, it was decided that the publication will be released at least once a year, with the first issue being ready for September 2017. This will add a vibrancy to our movement and allow supporters and members to contribute actively to the perspective of the organization be it through art, analysis, or polemic.

Finally, the 6th Congress expressed solidarity with the comrades from RSM Sudbury, who are facing heavy police repression. The MER-RSM unequivocally condemns the outrageous actions of the Sudbury Police and Ontario Provincial Police and offers the support and assistance necessary for our comrades there to continue doing their great work. Further the MER-RSM extends our solidarity to Igor Sadikov, a student at McGill who faces major backlash from McGill’s Student Society and university’s administration for publicly expressing his anti-Zionist views. MER-RSM supports struggles against imperialism and colonialism in Canada and internationally and therefore stand in defence of his critique of Zionism. In this vein, we also affirm our solidarity with the member organizations of the International League of People’s Struggles. Through each of these declarations MER-RSM hopes to build comradery and strength by celebrating others who join us in the fight against imperialism, colonialism and capitalism.

Demonstrating the quality and growth of the organization, our Coordinating Committee now mainly consists of comrades who have not been on it previously. Due to this fact, some responsibilities are going to be shared between several people, in order to ensure a steady transition. Regional organizers will contact their sections shortly to introduce themselves:

Chairperson: Dimka Melnik (returning)
Ontario Organizer: Ken Kollontai
Ontario Organizer: Emma Calico
Quebec and Eastern Provinces Organizer: Dimka Melnik & Juju Rmd
Prairies and British Columbia Organizer: Yan Ni & Ian Desales
English Propaganda Officer: Cameron Mcalpine
French Propaganda Officer: Juju Rmd

Our struggles among the student masses have made us the largest left-wing student organization in Canada!

In Solidarity,
The Coordinating Committee of the Mouvement Étudiant Révolutionnaire – Revolutionary Student Movement (MER-RSM)