WORKING GROUPS are the heart of QPIRG Concordia. They are groups, collectives, networks, projects, and campaigns that organize together in the Montreal community, and beyond, on a wide variety of issues directly related to social and environmental justice.
Together, QPIRG Concordia’s twenty-eight working groups share skills and knowledge, engage in popular education and art, organize events and protests, provide direct support and solidarity, publish alternative research and analysis, and, in general, contribute, encourage, and maintain resistance in diverse and creative ways. Read more about this year’s working groups below.
* AT THE HEART OF RESISTANCE is QPIRG Concordia’s working groups journal, featuring articles and images from dozens of our groups covering topics ranging from prisoner justice, to indigenous solidarity, from queer support for Palestine, to Anarchist secure technologies, and much more! You can pick up a copy at QPIRG Concordia, or you can read the 2012 edition of the journal online HERE. The 2011 edition is available HERE.
* WORKSHOPS: Many of our working groups offer workshops on a variety of topics related to their ongoing organizing and campaigns. Read more about these workshops, which you can request for your own group, HERE.
QPIRG CONCORDIA WORKING GROUPS
(descriptions and contact info are listed below)
- Accessibilize Montreal!
- Anti-Colonial Solidarity Committee
- Assemblée Populaire et Autonome de Montréal (APAM)
- Centre Social Autogéré de Pointe-Saint-Charles
- Certain Days Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar Collective
- CIEM (Colectivo de Inmigrantes Españoles en Montreal)
- Collectif opposé à la brutalité policière (COBP)
- Convergence des luttes anticapitalistes / Anti-Capitalist Convergence (CLAC)
- Cordillera People Support Group
- Dignidad Migrante
- École-libre radicale de Mtl Rad school
- 8th March Committee Women of Diverse Origins
- Équipe Sonore / Soundteam
- Indigenous Women and Two-Spirit Harm Reduction Coalition
- Justice for the Victims of Police Killings
- Mad Pride Collective
- Montreal Anarchist Bookfair Collective
- Montreal Childcare Collective
- Open Door Books Montreal
- Prisoner Correspondence Project
- Projet Accompagnement Solidarité Colombie (PASC)
- Qouleur Qollective
- Queer Between The Covers
- Solidarity Across Borders
- Ste Emilie Skillshare
(descriptions and contact info are listed below)
Accessibilize Montreal! aims to make Montreal a more accessible place in every way: from the mindsets and interactions between Montrealers to the infrastructure that surrounds us. By holding workshops like What is Accessibility, and Accessibilizing Language, we challenge mainstream perceptions of disability, and through advocacy and direct action we protest transit and systemic discrimination. Join us in our fight against ableism and a celebration of diversity!
Anti-Colonial Solidarity Committee
The Anti-Colonial Solidarity Committee works in direct solidarity with Indigenous organizers and communities fighting for land, freedom and self-determination, from an anti-colonial and anti-capitalist perspective. We have organized efforts in opposition to the 2010 Olympics, supporting Indigenous-led efforts in particular. We have also been active in support of other Indigenous self-determination efforts, including direct solidarity work with communities in Kanehsatake, Akwesasne, Tyendinaga, Kahnawake, Six Nations, Grassy Narrows, and Nitassinan.
Assemblée Populaire et Autonome de Montréal (APAM)
L’ Assemblée populaire autonome de Montréal vise à se réapproprier des enjeux qui affectent l’ensemble de nos communautés. Faire entendre notre voix, participer d’égal à égal au processus de décision et mettre en œuvre des moyens concrets de revendiquer ainsi que de participer directement au progrès social; c’est cette volonté qui nous a pousséEs à créer cet espace public.
Centre Social Autogéré de Pointe-Saint-Charles
Le Centre social autogéré a réussi à se réapproprier le Bâtiment 7, un ancien bâtiment industriel de Pointe-Saint-Charles, après plusieurs années de lutte populaire. Avec d’autres acteurs réunis au sein du Collectif 7 à nous, il vise à rénover, aménager et occuper le Bâtiment 7 au cours des prochaines années, afin d’en faire un lieu d’activité sociales, culturelles et politiques autogérées. Le projet est ouvert à toutes celles et tous ceux qui partagent nos principes d’autogestion et de solidarité !
Certain Days Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar Collective
The Certain Days Political Prisoner Calendar Committee works to support, educate about and fundraise for political prisoners through the production of a yearly calendar. The calendar is a project produced by organizers in Montreal and Toronto, with the support of 3 political prisoners in upstate New York. We work with an anti-imperialist, anti-racist, feminist, queer and trans positive perspective to help free our movement’s political prisoners.
CIEM (Colectivo de Inmigrantes Españoles en Montreal)
We are a group of immigrants from Spain and Spanish descended individuals & friends in Montreal who raise awareness against the current worldwide neoliberal establishment and its pro-austerity policies. We also collaborate with migrant justice groups in Montreal aiming to improving their status and rights.
Collectif opposé à la brutalité policière (COBP)
The Collective Opposed to Police Brutality (COBP) is an autonomous group that includes victims, witnesses and others who are concerned about police brutality and all abuses perpetuated by the police. The COBP’s goal is not just to denounce harassment, violence, intimidation, arrests and abuse by the police, but also to raise awareness about our rights, and to support victims of police violence.
Convergence des luttes anticapitalistes / Anti-Capitalist Convergence (CLAC)
La Convergence des luttes anticapitalistes – Montréal est un espace de convergence et de coordination pour le milieu anticapitaliste radical de la région de Montréal. La CLAC a le mandat de porter publiquement le discours anticapitaliste par l’organisation de diverses campagnes et manifestations, dont la mobilisation anticapitaliste du 1er mai à chaque année. La CLAC se conforme à un mode de fonctionnement antiautoritaire et adhère aux principes de l’Action Mondiale des Peuples. La CLAC est un espace explicitement anticapitaliste, antipatriarcal, antiautoritaire et anticolonialiste.
Cordillera People Support Group
We are in the process of exploring the interests, needs, and experiences of indigenous Filipinos in the community and their general and specific issues close to them. Our objective is to gather information on issues of their concerns and share experiences between each other. Later on, we can develop participatory action based research and unite on what actions we can take that are needed to change our common issues.
Dignidad Migrante is a group of immigrant workers and allies that fight against the exploitation of workers. We fight for the right of migrants to equal access to basic services regardless of their immigration status. We are anticapitalist, and enthusiastic about working with communities that share our struggle for migrant dignity.
École-libre radicale de Mtl Rad school
The Rad School provides a space for children to pursue their own interests, explore at their own pace and participate in a democratic community. They are encouraged to learn what they are passionate about, to explore, question, discover and grow! This working group is focused on making student centered learning available to everyone, freedom in education for all!
8th March Committee Women of Diverse Origins
We are an alliance of grassroots women’s organizations representing the diversity of cultural communities in Montreal. Since 2002, we have organized an International Women’s Day march and event that reflects our militant stand and our awareness about the world context and the role of our own struggles and actions. We have brought in speakers from around the world; women who proclaim women’s rights as human rights, women who fight for social justice and the liberation of all peoples, and women who are rooted in daily struggles against war, violence, and conflict. We seek to share our experiences, widen our understanding, and broaden women’s solidarity both locally and globally.
Équipe Sonore / Soundteam
Équipe Sonore/Soundteam provides sound services for Montreal area community groups that cannot afford to pay professional rates. We build, maintain and operate P.A. systems for community events, rallies, conferences and performances. We also strive to disseminate and democratize the technical knowledge of audio production systems. Our purpose is to support people’s grassroots initiatives and act in the interests of communities and their struggles for economic and political justice.
Indigenous Women and Two-Spirit Harm Reduction Coalition
We are a a non-hierarchal Indigenous collective running under a Indigenous feminist framework. The collective provides free harm reductive resources, referrals and services to Aboriginal women a Two-Spirit peoples in Montreal via mail and email correspondence. Resources include a clean needle service, pregnancy tests, gloves, dental dams and condoms. We also provide resources and referrals around issues like sexual health, legal rights, food insecurity, homelessness, sex work, criminalization, addiction and other issues which effect Indigenous peoples.
Justice for the Victims of Police Killings
The Justice for the Victims of Police Killings Coalition brings together directly affected families and friends of the victims of police killings, as well as their allies. Our main goals and purpose as a coalition are to remember the victims who lost their lives due to police violence, impunity and abuse; and to support their families and friends in any way we can. The Coalition follows from years of struggle and support for the families and friends of police killing victims. The Coalition currently involves the family members and friends of Anas Bennis, Claudio Castagnetta, Ben Matson, Quilem Registre, Gladys Tolley, Jean-Francois Nadreau and Fredy Villanueva, all of whom died as a direct result of police actions and interventions. We continue to reach out to family and friends of other victims of police killings.
Life After Life
Life After Life is a collective led by formerly incarcerated girls, women, and trans people dedicated to challenging post-conviction barriers to community re-entry. We specifically encourage LAL members to become advocates who can interrupt the “revolving door” of recidivism and the intersecting cycles of interpersonal, sexual assault, and state violence.
Mad Pride Collective
We’re a fabulous collective by and for folks identifying as mad, sad, crazy, hyper-emotional, mentally ill/different, psychiatric survivors/consumers and/or questioning. We meet regularly for mad hangouts and support groups, we have a mental health distro and we participate in /give workshops on radical mental health.
Montreal Anarchist Bookfair Collective
The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair — and month-long Festival of Anarchy (May 2015) — bring together anarchist ideas and practice, through words, images, music, theatre and day-to-day struggles for justice, dignity and collective liberation. The Bookfair and Festival are as much for people who don’t necessarily consider themselves anarchists, but are curious about anarchism, as they are spaces for anarchists to meet, network and share in a spirit of respect and solidarity. All are welcome. The Bookfair and Festival are together one of the largest anarchist events in North America, and for the past decade, an important gathering and reference point for anti-authoritarian ideas and practice.
Montreal Childcare Collective
The Childcare Collective, offers strategic childcare in response to the fact that childcare is frequently overlooked and underappreciated. We aim to assist parents, caregivers, youth and children, including but not limited to low-income communities, non-status and immigrant communities, communities of colour, and queer and trans communities.
Open Door Books Montreal
We are part of an informal network of Books to Prisoners programs throughout North America. ODB seeks to support and work in solidarity with imprisoned communities. We believe that prisons and the (in)justice system act as institutions of social control and oppression, further targeting marginalized communities as a result of patriarchy, racism, homophobia, transphobia, classism, ableism and an ongoing history of colonization.
Prisoner Correspondence Project
The Prisoner Correspondence Project is a collectively-run initiative based out of Montreal, Quebec. It coordinates a direct-correspondence program for gay, lesbian, transsexual, transgender, gendervariant, two-spirit, intersex, bisexual and queer inmates in Canada and the United States, linking these inmates with people a part of these same communities outside of prison.
Projet Accompagnement Solidarité Colombie (PASC)
The PASC is a collective based in Quebec which works to create a direct solidarity network with Colombian communities and organizations that struggle for life, dignity and autonomy. Aside from international accompaniment, our solidarity work involves contributing to anti-capitalist and other social struggles that target economic imperialism throughout the Americas.
The QOULEUR QOLLECTIF is a volunteer-run, not-for-profit group comprised of Two-Spirited and LGBTTQ Indigenous and racialized people/people of colour in Montreal. Its mission is to create dialogue around issues that affect their community through artistic, social, cultural, and political events and activities.
Queer Between The Covers
Queer Between the Covers is a volunteer collective that promotes and provides access to queer materials in Montreal. We organize an annual queer book fair, which attracts hundreds of people, and assembles both local and out-of-town authors, zinesters, independent bookstores, publishers, and community groups. The collective also runs a queer book/zine distro and organizes smaller queer-lit events.
Re-Con is a prisoner-initiated re-integration program created in 1999. The group is made up of people serving a life sentence at the Federal Training Center in Laval, formerly incarcerated members now serving their sentence on parole, and outside volunteers. It is Re-Con’s main goal to establish links between prisoners and the community after a long period of incarceration and isolation. We aim to diminish the effects of institutionalization through personal development workshops and by introducing those incarcerated to community resources which may help them re-integrate into society upon their release from prison. To this end, weekly meetings that take place both inside and outside the prison focus on exploring the various services, resources, and networks available outside the prison walls.
We are a superstar screenprinting team of volunteers whose mandate is to make screenprinting accessible to projects and organizations working for social change. Sidetracks was born out of the Ste-Emilie Skillshare and works to uphold its mandate.
Solidarity Across Borders
Solidarity Across Borders is a migrant justice network based in Montreal, active since 2003. We are comprised of migrants and allies, and we organize together to support individuals and families who are confronting an unjust immigration and refugee system. We mobilize around these main demands: an end to deportations and detentions and the abolition of double punishment of migrants with criminal records. We demand Status for All! and are in the beginning stages of building a “Solidarity City” campaign. We take action by engaging in popular education, support work, as well as political mobilizations, including demonstrations, pickets, delegations, and direct actions.
Ste Emilie Skillshare
The Ste-Emilie Skillshare is a community art space devoted to empowerment, self-determination and collective liberation. It is a space run by and for people who are trans, two-spirit, queer, Indigenous and/or people of colour and friends. As a collective of activists and artists, we work within an anti-oppression framework toward social and economic transformation. We share skills and resources to create art in the spirit of self-representation and revolution.
Some recent working groups of QPIRG-Concordia include: Alcan’t in India; Anarchist Reading Circle; Block the Empire Montreal; Brown Birthing Network; Colours of Resistance Montreal; Comité soutien Dany Villanueva; Committee to Support Kader Belaouni; Common Front; Countershot; End Exploitation; Haiti Action Montreal; Ici La Otra; Independent Media Center (IMC-Montreal); Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Movement (IPSM); Initiative de Vidéo Stratégique; International Solidarity Movement (ISM); Kanehsatake Garden Project; LCP (Live-in Caregiver Program) Focus Group; Mad Autonomous Solidarity Collective (MASC); Mexico-Montreal; Not In Our Name – Concordia; Parc X Citizens’ Committee; Projet Accompagnement Solidarité Colombie (PASC); Political Prisoner Solidarity Project; Résovélo; SNAP! Moving to Our Own Beats; Tadamon! Montreal; Women in Gear/Les Dérailleuses; W.O.R.D. (Writing Our Rhymes Down); and many others!
Some groups and projects that evolved from QPIRG-Concordia’s working groups in the past include: Right to Move/La Voie Libre; Popular Film Series (evolved into Cinema Politica); Urgence Manif; Sustainable Concordia; Blood Sisters; Un Juste Café; Santropol Roulant; Concordia Recycling and Composting Committee; Vegan Lunch Program (became People’s Potato); Project Take Root (evolved into Frigo Vert); Action Rebut; ASEED (became Equiterre); and others!