Under both the federal Conservative Government and the Ontario Liberal government, cuts to vital public services, environmental deregulation, increased unemployment, slashing of funding to the arts, and other policies harmful to people, communities, and the Earth have been implemented without proper consultation of the people living in this nation.
Austerity measures are not just about “balancing the budget” or ensuring “economic security”. Government officials and the mainstream media discuss austerity purely economically and are not discussing how real people are affected. Nor do they discuss what is really motivating the push for austerity. Enforcing austerity policies only creates more insecurity in the realms of health (physical and mental), personal/family financial security, education, the right to sustain traditional relationships with the land, and living with dignity.
Austerity hurts us all.
Moreover, some are affected in more and differing ways as these policies are often times laced with racist, anti-immigrant, sexist, classist and homo- and transphobic ideologies. What this means is that both the young and the older are living under constant attack in a system where most of us are just trying to scrape by to survive.
Austerity hurts Communities:
Over the past year we have witnessed numerous movements emerge to resist harmful government policies that have increased funding of maximum security prisons, boosted the military, and subsidized mining and energy corporations. However, these same policies have also cut the very services that decrease the likelihood of crime, assist people and places ravaged by war, and work to protect our most precious source of life.
Austerity hurts. Let’s mobilize, resist, and reclaim!
There are various movements across the country that have been fighting against austerity. On an individual and collective level, the first step is simply talking about how you are affected. When we begin to talk to each other. we soon realize that we are not the only ones! There are others who are feeling overwhelming amounts of stress, anger and frustration. Those negative feelings can be turned around to demand change!
Let’s have a conversation. We are reaching out to people, organizations and communities to tell us how they are being affected by austerity. It’s simple. It takes two minutes! Simply grab a sheet of paper and a marker and write down why #AusterityHurts YOU. Take a picture and upload! Your answer can be as little as 5 words or as much as your placard can fit! The idea is for numerous people to read each other’s messages and end the feelings of isolation and helplessness. We are not a lone and we can do something!
Ways to share your photo:
Facebook: Solidarity Against Austerity
Tweet us: @MayDayOttawa
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please use the #AusterityHurts hashtag on your placards. It allows us to reach more people and communities!
Some ideas to get you started:
#Austerityhurts me/my community/because….
#Austerityhurts us all.
#Austerityhurts the environment
#Austerityhurts communities of colour
#Austerityhurts settler/indigenous relations
We recognize that we are currently living, working and existing on what Anishnabai (First Nations, Inuit and Métis) people call Turtle Island. More specifically, Solidarity Against Austerity is based on Algonquin Territory – Ottawa.