Algonquins of Barriere Lake – Land Defenders – Videos

December 11th, 2016 by waawaashkesh 2 comments »

Three videos, two current re No Mining, and one feature film now available pay-on-demand, are EMBEDDED BELOW or clickable: 5-min Nov 21 GroundWire News feature; 11-min Nov 22 Quebec National Assembly press conference (French w English subtitles); and 59-min 2013 Honour Your Word documentary (English w French subtitles, $4.99 on-demand).
UPDATE: Urgent call to action (Dec 16) – Appel à la solidarité (le 16 dec)

No Mining on Algonquin Territory, by Waylon Nottaway

“No Mining on Algonquin Land”, painting by Waylon Nottaway

Since the start of October 2016, Barriere Lake community members have set up a Land Defenders Camp to protect their territory from mining, from Copper One and other mining companies. Read more at ou en Francais,

Here are ways to support the efforts:


Recent articles

Mining Companies Encounter Barrier at Barriere Lake
by Sarah Nixon (The Leveller, Nov 23 2016)

Lac Barrière: l’assaut des minières
by Norman Matchewan (Le Devoir, Nov 21 2016)

Forthcoming book…

Grounded Authority: The Algonquins of Barriere Lake against the State
by Shiri Pasternak – based on the work contained in her 2013 thesis

Video #1: No Mining – Algonquins of Barriere Lake Land Defenders Camp – GroundWire News (5min)

  • November 21 2016, featuring interviews with Norm Matchewan (via The Circle, CHUO 89.1FM Ottawa) and Chief Casey Ratt (via OPIRG Roots Radio, CKCU 93.1FM Ottawa)

Video #2: Lac Barrière et Malartic – L’acceptabilité sociale des projets miniers? (11min, Fr w Eng sub)

  • November 22 2016 press conference at the Quebec National Assembly, featuring Amir Khadir of Quebec Solidaire, Priscille Trudel of Comité de citoyens de la zone sud de Malartic, and (starting at 5:25) Michel Thusky of the Algonquins of Barriere Lake.

Video #3: Honour Your Word (2013, 59min, directed by Martha Steigman; Eng w Fr sub; $4.99 ondemand)

  • The film draws us into the lives of two young leaders: Marylynn Poucachice, a mother of five, and Norman Matchewan, the soft-spoken son and grandson of traditional chiefs. Both spent their childhoods on the logging blockades their parents set up to win a sustainable development plan protecting their land. But it turns out signing the agreement was the easy part. Now, 20 years later, Norman and Marylynn are taking up the struggle of their youth, to force Canada and Quebec to honour their word.

Invitation to Alternative Media Movement Assembly at the Peoples Social Forum

July 22nd, 2014 by waawaashkesh No comments »

August 23 – a Movement Assembly on Building Radical Media and Activist Communication Infrastructures

~ Le français suit ~

Invitation to Alternative Media Movement Assembly at the Peoples Social Forum

Greetings to media-makers, media-organizers, media-activists, and all those who feel that media is important to our movements,

This is a letter to invite you and/or your organization to participate in a Movement Assembly on Building Radical Media and Activist Communication Infrastructures, that will be taking place at the Peoples Social Forum (PSF) national gathering in Ottawa August 21-24 (the Assembly itself is planned for Saturday August 23rd). What follows is a description of the media assembly and how you can get involved with the planning process:

As an individual:

  • Attend: Participate in the overall PSF Aug 21-24 and the Assembly itself Aug 23 in Ottawa;
  • In the loop: receive periodic updates, assist with outreach or promotion in your own circles and opportunities to contribute when you have capacity ;
  • Active participation: attending weekly planning committee meetings, taking on tasks in organizing the Assembly.

As an organization:

  • Endorsement: sign on to give your approval of this process, and help to promote it;
  • Sponsorship: contribution of financial and/or other in-kind resources as able;
  • Organizer/Anchor: input and participation in the planning committee process.

To get involved, please either fill out this form with your input of ideas as well as contact info, and/or contact us directly at

What is this about?

This assembly aims to bring together journalists and activists organizing in alternative/grassroots media. This is an initial step to create a platform where different media activists and organizations can come together in the hopes of creating a shared, unified, political project on a broad range of issues around building media and communication infrastructure.

Media continues to be an integral part of activism – not only do we need to create alternative media to communicate the stories and politics of various social movements, but media activism can be used for education, working collectively and creating spaces for those who do not have a voice in mainstream media. But this work is incredibly difficult, needing a high level of resources, skills, money and labour (often unpaid) to pull off.

This project is about breaking down the isolation of various alternative media projects, so that media activists can connect with one another and begin to better support each other’s efforts. We also hope that we can use this opportunity to create a collaborative network towards building and improving activist media.

We are still working on the plans for the Assembly, but have identified some initial themes to be addressed from a survey we developed:

  • incorporating anti-oppressive, anti-capitalist and anti-colonial principles into media organizing and making
  • building leadership of marginalized communities within our media organizations
  • building organizational capacity and networks, and exploring different organizational models for media activism
  • interrogating our role as journalists / media-makers and the issues associated with news coverage
  • looking at ways to support independent / non-affiliated journalists and media-makers in addressing and overcoming the various challenges in their work.

What is a Movement Assembly?

A ‘Movement Assembly’ is a facilitated community space designed for individuals and groups to strategize together to come up with common actions and campaigns. In Movement Assemblies, people create action plans for sustained collaborative work across issues on local, regional, and national fronts.

The Peoples Social Forum is a gathering, over two years in planning, bringing together thousands from across the country to Ottawa near the end of August. The current plan is that there will be two days of workshops (including many relevant to media organizing / media making), one day of Movement Assemblies, and one day of overall Assembly. There will also be at least one big march, and cultural activities as well. Full info at:

Who Should Attend?

Really, anyone engaged in any form of alternative/activist media is welcome to attend.We are looking for (but not limited to) those who express their activism in: print, web, zines, blogs, graphic design, radio broadcasting, graffiti, digital media, video and more! We also welcome those who don’t necessarily make media, but do recognize it’s importance in their work for social change and would like to support these efforts.

We hope this sounds of interest to you, please do be in touch (via the form, or directly) if you’d like to contribute to the planning process, or if you have questions – and we hope to see you at the Assembly on August 23 in Ottawa!

The ‘Alternative Media Movement Assembly’ planning committee

PS – Please be sure to register to attend the overall Forum:

There are also housing/billeting options, caravans coming from various cities, and a Solidarity Fund aimed at youth, Indigenous, Peoples of Colour, remote and low income individuals with special considerations for maximizing the number of people able to attend. There are deadlines for these coming up quick, so please don’t delay!


Invitation à l’Assemblée des médias alternatifs au Forum social des peuples

Aux organisateurs, créateurs et militants du milieu médiatique, et à tous ceux qui jugent que les médias sont importants dans nos mouvements,

Nous vous invitons, vous et votre organisme, à participer à une Assemblée des mouvements sur la construction des infrastructures de communication des médias radicaux et militants, qui se tiendra lors du Forum social des peuples (FSP), rassemblement national ayant lieu à Ottawa du 21 au 24 août (l’Assemblée elle-même se tiendra le samedi 23 août. L’heure est à déterminer).

Vous trouverez ci-bas une description de l’Assemblée des médias et des moyens de vous impliquer dans le processus :

En tant qu’individu :

  • Assistez : Participez au FSP du 21 au 24 août et l’assemblée elle-même le 23 août à Ottawa;
  • Demeurez à jour : Recevez des mises à jour périodiques, faites passer le mot et parlez-en dans vos cercles, contribuez quand vous pouvez;
  • Participation active : Assister à des comités hebdomadaires de planification, entreprendre des tâches pour organiser l’Assemblée.

En tant qu’organisme :

  • Soutenez : Ajoutez votre nom à la liste de ceux qui soutiennent notre processus, et aidez-nous à promouvoir l’Assemblée;
  • Commanditez : Contribution financière et/ou d’autres ressources;
  • Organisateur/Aide: Opinion et participation dans le processus du comité de planification.

Pour participer, SVP remplissez ce formulaire avec vos idées ainsi que vos renseignements, et/ou contactez-nous directement au

Sur quoi l’assemblée portera-t-elle?

Cette assemblée a pour but de réunir les journalistes et les militants organisateurs du milieu des médias alternatifs et communautaire. C’est un premier pas vers la création d’une plateforme à partir de laquelle différents militants et organismes des médias peuvent se réunir dans l’espoir de créer un projet politique partagé et unifié portant sur une variété de sujets concernant l’infrastructure et la création des médias et de la communication.

Les médias continuent à être une composante intégrale du militantisme : non seulement avons-nous besoin de créer des médias alternatifs afin de communiquer des histoires et la politique d’une variété de mouvements sociaux, mais le militantisme au sein des médias peut servir à des fins d’éducation, de travail collectif et de la création d’espaces pour ceux qui n’ont pas de voix dans les médias courants. Mais ce travail est extrêmement difficile, nécessitant énormément de ressources, un niveau élevé de capacités, beaucoup d’argent et de travail acharné (souvent non-rémunéré).

Ce projet vise à défaire l’isolement d’une variété de projets, afin de permettre aux militants du milieu des médias de se rencontrer et de mieux soutenir les efforts des uns et des autres. Nous espérons aussi par cette occasion de pouvoir créer un réseau collaboratif vers la création et l’amélioration des médias militants.

Nous travaillons toujours sur les plans pour l’Assemblée, mais nous avons identifié des thèmes de base à adresser grâce à un sondage que nous avons développé :

  • Incorporer des principes anti-oppressifs,     anticapitalistes et anticoloniaux dans la création et l’organisation des médias
  • Faciliter un plus grand leaderships de la part des communautés marginalisées au sein de nos organisations médiatiques
  • Création de réseaux et d’une capacité organisationnelle, et exploration de différents modèles organisationnels de médias militants
  • Questionner notre rôle en tant que journalistes et créateurs de médias et les enjeux associés à la couverture médiatique des nouvelles
  • Évaluer de quelles manières on peut soutenir des journalistes indépendants/sans affiliation et des créateurs de médias afin qu’ils puissent faire face aux défis de leur travail.

Qu’est-ce qu’une Assemblée des mouvements?

Une « Assemblée des mouvements » est un espace communautaire conçu pour permettre à des groupes et à des individus de développer, ensemble, des stratégies, des actions et des campagnes communes. Dans les Assemblées des mouvements, les gens créent des plans d’action pour un travail collaboratif durable sur des enjeux locaux, régionaux, et nationaux.

Le Forum social des peuples est un rassemblement, suite à deux ans de planification, réunissant des milliers de personnes à travers le pays à Ottawa à la fin du mois d’août. Le plan actuel propose deux jours d’ateliers (incluant plusieurs qui sont pertinents à l’organisation et la création des médias), une journée d’Assemblées de mouvements, et une journée d’assemblée générale. Il y aura aussi au moins une grande marche, ainsi que des activités culturelles. Renseignements complets à

Qui devrait assister?

N’importe quelle personne impliquée de quelconque façon dans une forme de média alternatif ou militant est la bienvenue. Nous cherchons (mais ne nous limitons pas à) des gens qui expriment leur militantisme à travers: des publications, le web, des zines, des blogues, le design graphique, la diffusion radio, le graffiti, les médias digitaux, vidéo et plus! Nous accueillons aussi ceux qui ne créent pas forcément de médias, mais reconnaissent la place qu’occupent les médias au sein de leur travail visant le changement social, et qui voudraient soutenir ces efforts.

Si vous êtes intéressés, vous pouvez nous contacter (par ce formulaire ou directement), que ce soit pour contribuer au processus de planification ou pour toute question – et nous espérons vous voir à l’Assemblée le 23 août à Ottawa!

Le comité de planification de l’Assemblée des mouvements des médias alternatifs

P.S. SVP assurez-vous de vous inscrire au Forum!

Il y a aussi des options d’accommodement, des autobus provenant de différentes villes, et un fonds de solidarité pour les jeunes, les autochtones, les personnes de couleur/minorités, les personnes à faible ou bas revenu, avec l’intention de maximiser la participation au Forum. Il y a des dates limites pour ceux-ci, donc faites vite!

Let’s Talk about Mental Health Conference 2014

March 5th, 2014 by waawaashkesh No comments »

Saturday March 22, 11am-6pm, at the University of Ottawa. Everyone welcome – please register by March 19th. Full details coming soon …


The Centre for Students with Disabilities (CSD) is proud to present our conference “Let’s Talk About Mental Health” on Saturday March 22nd from 11 am to 6 pm. The day will cover a lot of interesting topics like the politics of mental health and self-care. The conference will also feature an art therapy space and group activity at the beginning of the conference.



Full conference schedule and locations now posted:

Workshops topics will include:

  • Living with Depression: self-care and coping strategies
  • How to cope with difficult life challenges in a positive way
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: An Introduction
  • The Note that Changed Us: Cultivating Conditions for Learners and Professors
  • Mental Health, as a Legal Concept
  • Disability and Capitalism
  • “Saneism” and Ableism that exists in social activism movements

    And more to be announced!

There will also tentatively be a speakers panel and a discussion group on body image and mental health. More details are to come!

The conference will include a light lunch and snacks. Please note that there will be ASL interpretation, child care, an active listening support space and that all locations for the conference will be physically accessible.

Please register for the Conference by contacting the CSD by March 19th at or 613-562-5800 x 2683 please feel free to let us know about any accessibility requirements, child care needs or dietary restrictions.

More info will be posted here and also on the CSD facebook page when it is available.

Let’s Talk About Mental Health conference March 9-10, 2013 in Ottawa

March 2nd, 2013 by o4j user No comments »

Let’s talk about Mental Health conference

March 9-10 at the University of Ottawa campus
on unceded and unsurrendered Algonquin territory


The SFUO’s Mental Health Coalition, in collaboration with the SFUO Campaign’s Department, the Centre for Students with Disabilities and the Peer Help Centre, will host the first ever radical mental health conference hosted by the Student Federation at the University of Ottawa. The conference entitled, “Let’s Talk about mental Health”, aims to take an anti-oppressive approach to reduce stigma and stereotypes associated with mental health and mental illness, bring an understanding to the importance and power of language, and to accept and celebrate mental diversity.

IMPORTANT: Registration deadline March 6th – or March 4th for ASL interpretation  


See the schedule outline below,
or click here for the detailed conference information document


Saturday, March 9th:

  • 9:15-9:45 breakfast, provided (Location: UCU Terminus)
  • 10:00-11:00 Resisting Mentalism: Becoming an Ally to Mad People and the Consumer/Survivor Community, part 1 by Alisa and Elizabeth (Location: UCU 205)
  • 11:30-12:30 Option A: Resisting Mentalism: Becoming an Ally to Mad People and the Consumer/Survivor Community, part 2 by Alisa and Elizabeth (Location: UCU 205) Option B: Grieving and Mental Health by Simone from Bereaved Families of Ottawa (Location LMX 390)
  • 12:30-1:30 lunch, provided (Location UCU Terminus)
  • 1:30-2:30 Option A: Active Listening and Peer Support by Amanda from Peer Help Centre (Location LMX 390) Option B: The Icarus Project: Radical Peer-based Mental Wellness organizing by Melissa, Anna, Greg (Location: UCU 205)
  • 3:00-5:00 Panel, with break and refreshments (Location: UCU Terminus), details to come
  • 5:30-7:30 Mad Student Society peer support meeting hosted by Alisa and Elizabeth (Location: TBD)

Sunday, March 10th:

  • 9:15-9:45 breakfast, provided (Location UCU Terminus)
  • 10:00-11:00 Proactive self care by Amanda and Alison (Location: UCU 205)
  • 11:30-12:30 Strength and Resilience of Indigenous Women Impacted by Intergenerational Trauma by Colleen and Kristen from Families of Sisters in Spirit (Location: UCU205)
  • 12:30-1:30 lunch, provided (Location UCU Terminus)
  • 1:30-2:30 Option A: Intersectional Approaches to Radical Mental Health Justice: Criminalization, Racialization, Sexism and Ableism from an Anti-Oppression and Decolonization Framework, Part 1 by Abla (Location: UCU 205) Option B: HIV, AIDs, and Mental Health by Sarah from Aids Committee of Ottawa (Location LMX 390)
  • 3:00-4:00 Option A: Intersectional Approaches to Radical Mental Health Justice: Criminalization, Racialization, Sexism and Ableism from an Anti-Oppression and Decolonization Framework, part 2 by Abla (Location: UCU 205) Option B: The Art of Listening: Tapping into the transformational power of skilled listening by Lana (Location LMX 390)
  • 4:00-5:00 Break, or Progressive Muscle Relaxation workshop by Lana (Location: UCU 205)
  • 5:00-8:00 coffee house, refreshments provided (Location: UCU Terminus)



*Some workshops have a part 1 and a part 2. We would ask that if you would like to attend, you sign up for both parts of the workshop

Brief Accessibility Notes:

All events will be held in buildings with elevators, in spaces that are physically accessible to those using mobility devices, and have washrooms which are also physically accessible to those using mobility devices.

ASL Interpretation is currently tentatively booked. Please notify us by March 4th if you would like that service present.

ASL, as well as other accommodations can be requested in the application form.  


Conference Contact Information:
Kyla Harkins, Centre for Students with Disabilities
211F University Centre, 85 University Private
613-562-5800 X 2683