… SPEAKERS …

Please note that information about individuals and groups speaking during the Forum appear below, in alphabetical order (according to first name, in the case of individuals):

Alexandre Popovic: Born in Montreal, Alex is someone well known to police services. Between 1995-2002, he was arrested twelve times, most of the time during demonstrations. He is currently not in custody.

Anna-Louise Crago: Anna-Louise is a long-time sex workers’ rights activist and fighter for decriminalization of sex work. She coordinates outreach work at Stella, Montreal’s by and for sex worker group. She has also worked with sex workers to document physical and sexual violence by police, military or para-military against them in Southern Africa, Congo (DRC) and Central Eastern Europe. Many of these stories are contained in publications available on-line: « Rights Not Rescue », « Arrest the Violence » and « Our Lives Matter. »

Bridget Tolley: Bridget is an Algonquin from the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg. On October 5, 2001, her mother, Gladys Tolley, was fatally struck by a Sûreté du Québec (SQ) patrol car on Highway 105, outside Maniwaki (Quebec). Shockingly, the SQ “investigation” was conducted by the brother of the officer who struck and killed Gladys Tolley and the coroner made his report without seeing her. The case was closed without notifying the family and the SQ remain secretive and confrontational. Bridget is fighting for an independent investigation into her mother’s death.

Collective Against Police Brutality (COBP): The COBP is an autonomous collective made up of those affected and concerned by police abuses. Since 1995, the COBP has been denouncing police violence and abuse and informing people of their rights through workshops and the publication of the « Guess What? We’ve Got Rights?! » booklet. The COBP also offers direct support to victims and participates in the organisation of different actions and demonstrations, most notably the annual March 15th demonstration for the International Day Against Police Brutality.

Ellen Gabriel:

Emma Strople: Emma is a young anarchist involved in social struggles. Originally from the East Coast, she now lives in Montreal.

Francine Registre: Francine is the sister of Quilem Registre, who was tasered 6 times within a span of 53 seconds by the Montreal police (SPVM) on October 14, 2007. Quilem died on October 18, 2007, at the age of 38 years. On June 10, 2008, the Crown prosecutor of Quebec decided not to lay criminal charges against the police officers involved, but, two months later, the coroner Catherine Rudel-Tessier stated that « even though the use of the Taser by the police officers cannot be considered as the medical cause of death of Mr Registre, the fact that he did […] receive multiple electrical shocks possibly contributed ». Two years later, we are still waiting for a response to the demand for a public inquiry, as well as a conclusion to the complaint filed with the police ethics commission. Despite everything, we remain determined to fight until the end in order for justice to prevail and for Quilem Registre’s reputation, which has been tarnished, to be restored.

François: François works at a non-profit organization with street youth. He was formerly part of Comité des sans emploi and is a member of the political punk band Jeunesse Apatride.

François Du Canal: François has been organizing against police brutality in Montreal for the past 10 years. He was/is a member of COBP, Justice pour Anas, Coalition for the Justice of Adil Charkaoui, CRAP amongst others. Since the death of Mohamed Anas Bennis, in December 2005 he has been following cases of police killings and impunity in Montreal very closely.

Gaby Pedicelli: Gaby completed the police technology program at John Abbott CEGEP and the Nicolet police academy in the late 1980s, but never worked as a police officer because she very quickly became critical of police culture. She later went on to write the book « When Police Kill: Police Use of Force in Montreal and Toronto », published in 1998. Gaby works at the People’s Potato (Concordia University’s vegetarian soup kitchen) and remains active in doing prisoner support work with people serving life sentences.

Independent Media Centre (IMC): The IMC is a free and open space, created as a tool for media activists and communities who are looking to produce and diffuse information relating to social movements, current events, local activism, political theory, and much more. It’s also space for sharing; an autonomous framework where knowledge and skills can be spread in the spirit of support and mutual aid.

Isabel Gonzalez: Isabel is a Queer Woman of Color who has worked as an organizer for 13 years. She was born and raised in Brooklyn NY and currently resides in Worcester, MA with her partner. Isabel was a collective member of Sista II Sista* and was recently a member of the National Collective of INCITE! Woman of Color Against Violence. She has organized on various issues ranging from economic and social justice to community accountability and violence against women of color. Isabel incorporates popular education in her organizing and political work. She is currently working on electoral organizing in Worcester, MA. Isabel is a proud aunt to seven nieces and nephews.
*Sista to Sista was a collective of Black and Latina working-class women, which was active in Brooklyn (New York), creating political and cultural alternatives to the systems we live in, to build a society of liberation and love.

Jaggi Singh: Jaggi is a community organizer who has been active with several local groups and campaigns including the Anti-Capitalist Convergence (CLAC), No One Is Illegal and the Anarchist Bookfair. He has been targeted many times for arrest, jail, and trial. Jaggi was once banned by the courts from amplifying his voice at any protest anywhere in Canada.

Jean-Bruno: Jean-Bruno has been socially and politically active for the last 13 years and is an active member of several Montreal anarchist collectives. He has worked in the community sector for the past 6 years and has been working exclusively on the issue of male sex workers rights for the last four-and-a-half years. He is a member of the ADDICQ (i.e., the Quebec Association for the Advocacy and Inclusion of Drug Users) and actively collaborates with STRASS (ie., the Sex Workers Union) and is a contributing member of several other activist groups and anarchist publications.

Jessica Yee: Jessica is a self-described Indigenous hip-hop feminist reproductive justice freedom fighter. 23 years old and Two-Spirited from the Mohawk Nation, Jessica is the founder and Executive Director of the Native Youth Sexual Health Network, a CanAmerica wide organization working on issues of healthy sexuality, reproductive justice, cultural competency, and youth empowerment. She is a strong believer in the power of the youth voice, and you can see her activisting it up on sites like the CNN syndicated Racialicious, Indian Country Today, or pick up her recently released book « Sex Ed and Youth: Colonization, Communities of Colour, and Sexuality. » She is the 2009 recipient of the YWCA Young Woman of Distinction award, a 2009 Role Model for the National Aboriginal Health Organization, and was recently named one of 20 International Women’s Health Heroes by Our Bodies/Our Blog.

Jillian Sudayan: Jillian is a member of Kabataang Montreal (KM), which is a Filipino Youth organization formed in 2000, based in Montreal, Quebec. The need to organize the Filipino youth grew out of the need to address the pressing issues facing our youth and our community. Issues such as high drop out rates, family separation, economic marginalization & young women’s issues are among many that have been identified. These issues are recognized as the impacts of systemic racism that Filipino youth face caused by global migration. We educate, organize, mobilize Filipino youth towards the settlement and integration of the Filipino community in Canadian society.

Krystle Alarcon: Krystle is a member of Kabataang Montreal (KM), which is a Filipino Youth organization formed in 2000, based in Montreal, Quebec. The need to organize the Filipino youth grew out of the need to address the pressing issues facing our youth and our community. Issues such as high drop out rates, family separation, economic marginalization & young women’s issues are among many that have been identified. These issues are recognized as the impacts of systemic racism that Filipino youth face caused by global migration. We educate, organize, mobilize Filipino youth towards the settlement and integration of the Filipino community in Canadian society.

Loira Limbal (aka DJ Laylo): Loira is a filmmaker, activist, and DJ originally from Puerto Rico, now based in New York. She recently directed and produced a documentary entitled Estilo Hip Hop, a feature length documentary that chronicles the lives of three hip hop activists from Brazil, Chile, and Cuba who firmly believe that hip hop can change the world. Limbal has worked at various community-based organizations including The Point CDC, The Dominican Women’s Development Center, and Sista II Sista*. In 2006, she founded The Reel X Project, which is a social justice and creative filmmaking space for young women of color in the Southwest Bronx.
*Sista II Sista was a collective of Black and Latina working-class women, which was active in Brooklyn (New York), creating political and cultural alternatives to the systems we live in, to build a society of liberation and love.

Lynn Worrell: Lynn is the Coordinator for W.O.R.D. (Writing Our Rhymes Down), an alternative educational program that uses Hip Hop culture as a tool to engage youth in self expression through writing. She is a video/time-based artist interested in exploring women’s role in Hip Hop.

Marcel Sévigny: Marcel worked with the Montreal police force for almost 9 years in the 1960s and 1970s. He eventually quit because of concerns that he would waste his life. He went on to work and organize in the community sector, and was a municipal councilor for 15 years in the neighbourhood of Pointe St-Charles. Marcel identifies as an anti-authoritarian, and is currently active with groups like La Pointe Libertaire and the Autonomous Social Centre. He published his second book: « Et nous serions paresseux? Résistance populaire et autogestion libertaire » in 2009.

Marie-Ève P.:

Marty Fink: Marty is a PhD Student in English at the the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Her work focuses on the connections between gender, queerness, illness, incarceration, and active resistance to HIV/AIDS. When she’s not working away on her dissertation, Marty volunteers with AIDS Community Care Montreal and with the Prisoner Correspondence Project.

Meryem Saci: Meryem was born and raised in Algeria, and came to Canada in July 2000 as a political refugee. She studied commerce, real estate and now political science at Concordia University. She is a singer-songwriter with Nomadic Massive (live band) and is part of the Royal Peasants (underground hiphop), and has worked at the Maison des Jeunes as an animator and ‘social worker’, organizing activities around arts: singing, writing, dancing. She has participated in a multitude of community events and youth organizations through art, in various places throughout the world…

Mubeenah Mughal: Mubeenah has been involved in social justice organizing work and community initiatives in Montreal and the United States for over 9 years. Mubeenah is raising two boys and sometimes finds it hard to talk to them about police.

Najlaa Bennis: Najlaa is one of Mohamed Anas Bennis’ sisters. Anas was killed by a Montreal city police officer the morning of December 1, 2005. Najlaa is the spokesperson for the Justice for Anas Coalition, a group that is active since January 2007. The Coalition demands the immediate release of all reports, evidence and information concerning the death of Anas, a full, public and independent inquiry into the death, and police accountability & an end to racial profiling and police impunity.

Nantali Indongo: Nantali is a concerned citizen who looks to affect change be it as a community educator in the classroom with the project « Hip Hop No Pop », as a vocalist with local band Nomadic Massive, as a freelance journalist and/or as an education researcher in McGill’s Faculty of Education.

Nargess Mustapha: Nargess was born in Montreal, and is of Lebanese background. She is studying sociology and is one of the spokespersons of Montreal-North Républik.

Nazila Bettache: Nazila is a Montreal-based organizer.

Neil “Zibbz” Guilding: A child of the Most High, Artist, Community Youth Worker, a Father in the cycle of life. Neil is a Photographer, Percussionist and Spoken Word Artist who lives Music Activisme. He is the Coordinator of the Jeunesse 2000, Head & Hands Youth Drop-in Center in NDG. Also a member of The Project X geared to address or deal with issues relating to Racial Profiling in Montreal and the World.

Nora Butler Burke: Nora is the coordinator of ASTTeQ (Trans Health Action of Quebec), a harm-reduction peer support, drop-in and outreach program for trans people in the Montreal region. She has been involved in migrant justice, indigenous solidarity and childcare organizing over the past 9 years in Montreal, and is currently working towards obtaining a nursing degree.

Pamela Shauk:

Patrick Cadorette: Pat is an anti-capitalist activist and free-lance translator based in Montreal. Over the last decade, he has been involved with several social justice and anti-war campaigns and projects in the city. He is one of the administrators of the Quebec Indymedia website and is currently active with the Collective Opposed to Police Brutality (COBP).

Quebec Association for the Advocacy and Inclusion of Drug Users (ADDICQ):
The Quebec Association for the Advocacy and Inclusion of Drug Users is an association that brings together a group of people, most of whom are drug users. We denounce the police harassment and repression we face on a daily basis, which force us to hide and use drugs in unsafe conditions, both for us and for those around us. As well, we denounce the barriers to accessing health care services that would treat us with respect and that would recognize our daily reality. We work specifically to combat barriers to access to health care, the HIV and hepatitis C epidemics, marginalization, social profiling, as well as homelessness.

Robyn Maynard: Robyn is member of the Project X, a group working to combat racial profiling of youth in N.D.G. by collecting testimonials about racial profiling, and educating youth of their rights with the police and other institutions. She is part of No One Is Illegal Montreal, a network made up of (im)migrants and racialized people fighting for justice and dignity for (im)migrants, refugees, and indigenous people. She gives popular education workshops on rights with the police as well on historical and current racism, colonialism and border controls in Canada. She also co-hosts and produces content for No One Is Illegal Radio.

Samir Shaheen-Hussain: Samir is a Montreal-based anti-authoritarian organizer who has been involved with Indigenous solidarity, migrant justice, and anti-police brutality work over the years. He is part of the No One Is Illegal campaign and is active with initiatives like the Justice for Anas Coalition and the Project Fly Home campaign.

Sarita Ahooja: Sarita is a Montreal community organizer who has worked with various liberation struggles and anti-capitalist movements in the North and South. She has battled the judicial system in the courts and on the streets. Sarita is active with No One Is Illegal and Solidarity Across Borders.

South Asian Women’s Community Centre (SAWCC): The SAWCC is a feminist service, support and advocacy organization for South Asian women and their families, that was founded in 1981. It concerns itself with everything of importance to its members and constituents.

Ste Emilie SkillShare: The Ste. Emilie SkillShare is a group of artists and activists, primarily people of colour and queer people, committed to promoting artistic expression and self-representation in our communities. We are building and running an art studio for people to learn new skills, share their skills, and create art in the spirit of revolution and anti-oppression. Skillsharing 4-ever!

Will Prosper: Will joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police while in university, and worked in Manitoba for five years. Since the shooting death of Fredy Villanueva by SPVM officer Jean-Loup Lapointe on August 9, 2008, he has been actively involved in anti-police brutality organising in Montreal-North with Montréal-Nord Républik, and was involved in the organization of Hoodstock, a social forum & urban musical event, held in Montreal-North this past summer.

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