W2MEDIA.CA | On today’s 7-8am broadcast of Media Mornings on Vancouver Co-op Radio 100.5 fm, we speak live with Kevin Neish in the Gaza Strip, Palestine. Plus organizer Chauncey on gentrification in the Downtown Eastside, and Charlie Smith (Georgia Straight).
Listen to the podcast:
- Interview with Chauncey, an organizer and worker in the Downtown Eastside, on gentrification concern in the neighbourhood in the wake of a new housing report by the Carnegie Community Action Project.
- Interview with Charlie Smith, editor of the Georgia Straight, on Vancouver police treatment of sex workers, the Green Party’s prospects in the May provincial elections, and a campaign to sign up support for federal Liberal leadership candidate Joyce Murray’s inter-party cooperation proposal.
- Interview with Kevin Neish (kevinneish.ca), an activist currently in the Gaza Strip in opposition to the ongoing Israeli blockade of the territory. Neish was on board the embargo-breaking aid ship the Mavi Marmara, which was raided by Israeli commandos in 2010, killing nine Turkish activists.
- Music: Amir Sulaiman (“Warrior’s Song”), Lal (“Your Body Could Start A War”), Invincible feat. Abeer (“People Not Places”).
TODAY’S TOP NEWS HEADLINES
- TOP NEWS AUDIO CLIP: EDMONTON POLICE RACISM ACCUSATION
Edmonton police are rejecting allegations that their officers mistreated an 18 year old Aboriginal woman who claims she was sexually assaulted at a motel by two men and a woman who were staying but when police were called, she was the one who got arrested. On top of that, she waited three days for a rape kit, during which time she was not allowed to shower and slept on the floor of a triple bunked remand centre (APTN).
- VANCOUVER: SEX WORKERS LAUNCH RIGHTS ED CAMPAIGN
Sex Workers United Against Violence Society (SWUAV) and Pivot Legal Society launched a new campaign on Wednesday to educate sex workers about what their rights are when dealing with police (Straight).
- VANCOUVER: PINK SHIRT DAY CRITICIZED
Yesterday was Anti-Bullying Day in BC, also known as Pink Shirt Day, when people are encouraged to wear pink shirts to show their support to counter bullying and discrimination such as homophobia. But British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life have taken issue with the BCTF’s approach and while the organization supports counter bullying measures, it does not support the Day of Pink which, according to Ted Hewlett, president of the organization, is used to gain approval for a particular lifestyle. By lifestyle, he clarified he was referring to LGBTQ people, who he said shouldn’t be promoted in schools (Straight).
- BC: BC LIBERALS ETHNIC APOLOGY STRATEGY LEAKED
The B.C. Liberals are poised to offer an apology for the Chinese head tax just weeks ahead of the provincial election campaign – a strategy that a leaked government document characterizes as a “quick win” for a party that is struggling to court the ethnic vote. The genesis for the apology can be traced to a Liberal government plan to shore up its appeal to ethnic voters, outlined in an internal 17-page “multicultural outreach” planning document obtained by the B.C. NDP opposition. The strategy directed the Liberals to identify “historical wrongs” that could be addressed for “quick wins” as the election nears (Globe & Mail).
- CANADA: CHINESE HEAD TAX REDRESS FUNDS CUT
Jason Kenney, citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism minister recently celebrated the end of the of the community historical recognition program. Out of the $5 million destined for Chinese Canadian projects, $500,000 had not been spent. Now that the program has ended, the remaining money has been clawed back into government revenue. Mr. Kenney said he won’t consider making the remaining funds available again (Globe & Mail).
- CANADA: REFUGEE HEALTH CUTS LAWSUIT
Three refugees denied care are presenting the human face of a case seeking to have cuts to refugee health declared unconstitutional and illegal. The case is being brought by the Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care and the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers and could take up to a year or more to be heard. Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Monday in the house of commons, “Canadian taxpayers have no obligation to provide gold plated health insurance to illegal immigrants who have been deemed by our fair and generous legal system not to be refugees” (Toronto Star).
- USA: HOUSE VOTES ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on its version of the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization today. The House will first vote on the Republican version of the bill which authorizes funding for programs to aid prosecution of domestic violence and sexual assault cases and assist victims. The House would then move to a vote on a version of the act adopted by the Senate this month that broadens the bill’s protections to gays and lesbians and expands the authority of tribal courts to prosecute non-native Americans accused in domestic violence cases on reservations (PhillyBurbs).
- PHILIPPINES: DICTATORSHIP COMPENSATION
Philippine president Benigno Aquino signed a landmark law on Monday compensating victims of military dictator Ferdinand Marcos, 27 years after a bloodless revolution ended his reign. The money, about $244 million in total, will be distributed to potentially thousands of people whom Marcos’s security forces tortured, raped or detained, as well as relatives of those who were killed (Al Jazeera).
- SOUTH KOREA: FIRST WOMAN PRESIDENT
Park Geun-Hye, the daughter of South Korea’s late military ruler, has been sworn in as the country’s first female president. Park is taking office a little more than 50 years after her father, Park Chung-He, seized power in a military coup. He went on to rule the country with an iron fist for the next 18 years until his eventual assassination, and remains a divisive figure – credited with lifting the country out of poverty but reviled for his regime’s human rights abuses (Al Jazeera).
- GREECE: RACIST MILITARY PROPOSAL
A total of 85 New Democracy MPs signed and tabled a motion to amend existing legislation which allows all Greek citizens including immigrants who have become Greeks through the process of naturalization to enrol in the country’s armed forces and police. The Chief of the Hellenic National Defense General Staff tweeted in Greek that “the time has come to regulate the race of students enrolling in military schools. They should be required to be of Greek race.” (Enet).
- AUSTRALIA: ANTI-ISLAM SPEAKER PROTESTED
Protesters have scuffled with police in Melbourne during a visit to Australia by the controversial anti-Islam Dutch politician Geert Wilders (Al Jazeera).