Demonstration Against Shock Treatment: Report from Site

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An important international demonstration happened in Toronto on May 16, where people gathered to protest against psychiatric electroshock treatment. It was organized by the Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault (CAPA) and happened simultaneously in over 25 cities around the world.

CKUT had a chance to interview Don Weitz, an insulin subcoma shock survivor before the demonstration, which you can find HERE. He shared why the protest is a historic event and what is special about it. CKUT wants to thank Aishwarya Singh for being present during the protest on May 16th and providing the materials for us, which allowed CKUT to report on its happenings.

The gathering included many shock survivors willing to tell others about their experiences, either by reading from the book or by a spoken word, to prevent further violence from electroshock activity. There was chanting and passionate cheering, which proved just how much the subject should be addressed.

Image Credit: Wikimedia

Interview with Clayton Thomas-Muller on the March for Jobs, Justice and the Climate

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Credits: Megan Devlin

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A broad coalition of groups, representing hundreds of thousands of people across Canada, hosted a press conference in Toronto yesterday to announce plans for the “March for Jobs, Justice and the Climate.” The march will call for a justice-based transition to a clean-energy economy in Canada, and is expected to attract thousands of people in Toronto on July 5, on the eve of the Climate Summit of the Americas and Pan American Economic Summit.

Anouk Millet of the CKUT news collective spoke with Indigenous activist Clayton Thomas-Muller, organizer with 350.org, to bring us more.

LGBT Rights during War in Ukraine

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From left to right: Jordan Arsenaut, a moderator, Marusya Bociurkiw, a filmmaker and Anna Dovgopol, a Ukraine human rights activist

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What’s Up?

On May 14th Montreal had a chance to host a sneak preview of the documentary by a Toronto filmmaker Marusya Bociurkiw called “This Is Gay Propaganda: LGBT Rights and the War in Ukraine” (2015), which focuses on the consequences of Ukrainian Euromaidan Revolution in modern Ukraine and its occupied regions. The film preview and discussion were co-presented by Cinema Politica, the Concordia University Research Chair in Sexual Representation & in Documentary. They were followed by the discussion with a Ukraine human rights activist Anna Dovgopol who is knowledgable about the current perception of LGBT community in Ukraine. She is also a Gender Democracy Program Coordinator at Heinrich Boell Foundation in Kyiv, Ukraine, responsible for supporting LGBT/queer, feminist and gender initiatives.

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Hassan Diab denied bail, continues to protest his innocence in the face of terrorism charges

Photo Credit: British Columbia Civil Liberties Association
Photo Credit: British Columbia Civil Liberties Association

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Hassan Diab, a former professor at the University of Ottawa, is currently imprisoned in Fleury-Merogis prison in France facing terrorism charges. Extradited to France in November of 2014, the case against Diab is built on shoddy evidence that would almost definitely not result in his conviction in the Canadian judicial system, the judge who oversaw his case has asserted. Based on this evidence, Diab was denied bail in March, but he, his loved ones, and activists continue to raise awareness of his wrongful incarceration and fight to procure his freedom. To learn more, we spoke to Donald Pratt, a member of the Hassan Diab support committee.

Canadian government seeks to criminalize Israel boycott

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The Harper government has recently announced they want to use articles of the Criminal Code pertaining to hate propaganda in order to criminalize the boycott campaign against the state of Israel. Last year the government added national origin to the criteria for hate crimes.

Minister of Public Safety, Steven Blaney, declared in front of the UN that the Boycott Divestment Sanction campaign is a form of underlying antisemitism and that there will be no tolerance for the critics of the state of Israel.

CKUT’s Antoine Cadaux talked to Tyler Levitan, president of Independent Jewish Voices, a group active in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign against Israel to get a reaction from targeted groups.

CKUT News Collective

Demonstration Against Shock Treatment: Interview with Don Weitz

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Click here to download the audio.

What is it all about?

On May 16th Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault (CAPA) held a demonstration against electroshock (ECT) in Toronto. This protest occurred internationally, in 28 cities around the world, and is organized by three shock survivors: Debra Schwartzkopff, Ted Chabasinski and Mary Maddock. 

CAPA has a long history of initiating such demonstrations, including annual international ECT focused on women and the elderly. This particular protest is specifically targeting the American Psychiatric Association, which is believed to have constantly lied about shock therapy, claiming that there is no harm to the patient.

In fact, research has shown that shock always causes brain damage (Zarubenko et al., 2005), memory loss and cognitive impairment (Sackeim et al., 2007). There is also a consent issue involved, as patients are rarely (if ever) asked if they want to be treated with electroshock.

Who Are We Talking To?

The interactive interview is with Don Weitz, an insulin subcoma shock survivor, who has been an antipsychiatry activist for over 30 years. He is an active member of the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty. The discussion touches upon the importance of the demonstration in Toronto and psychiatric “treatment” in general.

Resistance to reopening of the Imperial Metals mine on Mount Polley

Photo Credit: Warrior Publications
Photo Credit: Warrior Publications

 

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In so-called British Columbia, Indigenous groups continue to resist the re-opening of the Imperial Metals Mount Polley Mine. A breach in a toxic tailings pond at Mount Polley last August caused one of the worst environmental disasters in Canadian history. On April 29th, an national day of action was held to prevent Imperial Metals from resuming work in the area. We’ll hear from Indigenous warrior Kanahus Manuel about the situation.