World Social Forum Montréal

The Committee for a Workers’ International (Of which Socialist Alternative Canada is part) had a brilliant intervention during the week of the World Social Forum in Montréal. With over 1,200 events covering a huge range of topics and over 10,000 people attending, the Forum can be bewildering. The CWI however had a clear purpose – to build support for socialist ideas.

There were 18 members actively involved during the week, from Québec, the US, Belgium & Canada. We raised, in total, nearly $1,900. We sold over 300 Québec papers –and over 60 Canadian, Belgian and US ones. We held a lively table, staffed all day from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm, Wednesday to Friday. There were constant discussions in French and English with people from around the world.

We went on two demos – an opening one on the Tuesday afternoon and the second on Friday in support of the striking workers from the Old Port of Montreal (see separate report).

We held 2 workshops on ‘Good Jobs and a Healthy Environment’ and ‘New Left Formations’ with nearly 90 people attending in total. Our CWI meeting had over 30 people, with potential members from Quebec and the US. As of writing, we have recruited 2 new members in Québec, have several immediate possible recruits in Québec, and a longer list of at least 100 interested people from Québec, Canada, the US and worldwide.

A negative side of the Forum was Canadian immigration’s refusal of visas to some 230 visitors, mainly from Latin America and Africa, including Aminata Traoré, a candidate for UN General Secretary. No doubt Canadian immigration would have rolled out the welcoming carpet for visiting white company executives. This discriminatory treatment shows the limits of the Trudeau government’s liberal approach.

While the Canadian government seeks to restrict international exchange, the CWI continues to build solidarity and support for socialism.

Posted in: Canada, Quebec