Vancouver Critical Mass

Mostly event announcements, news, and bicycle related activist opinions...
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24.8.16

Keep historic Prince of Wales bridge open

Hey,

I just signed the petition "City of Ottawa: Keep the Prince of Wales bridge open" and wanted to see if you could help by adding your name.

Our goal is to reach 1,500 signatures and we need more support. You can read more and sign the petition here:

www.change.org/.../city-of-ottawa-keep-the-prince-of-wales-bridge-open

Thanks!
russell
-------------

Keep historic Prince of Wales bridge open

Aileen Duncan Canada
The Prince of Wales bridge is a landmark of the nation's capital. It offers spectacular views of Ottawa, and connects us to the rivers that helped found this city. Recently, city officials announced they will spend $250,000 to bar access to the site by building gates at the entrances of the bridge.
As we approach Ottawa 2017 celebrations, we cannot allow this landmark of the city to be closed to public access.

Instead, policy makers should:
  1. Divert the $250,000 to safety upgrades on the bridge. These could include railings, replacing missing rail ties, an emergency access phone, and soft lighting. 
  2. Continue conversations regarding cost-sharing with the City of Gatineau and the National Capital Commission. 
  3. Commit to funding this site for a cycling pathway in the medium term.
  4. Estimate the costs of expanding the LRT to Gatineau via this bridge as part of Phase 2 or 3.
By the numbers:
  • Gates barring access to the Prince of Wales bridge are estimated to cost $250,000. 
  • A cycling and pedestrian path on the site is estimated to cost $10.5 million. 
  • In the 2016 City of Ottawa Budget, $2.7 million was committed on the condition that the City of Gatineau and the NCC agreed to share the costs of the project. They have not yet committed to funding the infrastructure project. 
  • An estimated 77,912 people commute between Ottawa and Gatineau for work, and this is expected to increase. 
More information: 
  • The Prince of Wales bridge has historic value and is recognized as a Capital Gem
  • Development of this site is included in the pathway network of the Ottawa Cycling Plan
  • The NCC support the creation of a multi-use path across the bridge as part of their 50-year Plan for the Nation's Capital.
  • The City of Ottawa has expressed an intention to fund the project, but the NCC and Ville de Gatineau will also need to contribute for this to become a reality. 
This petition will be delivered to:
  • City of Ottawa
  • Ville de Gatineau
  • National Capital Commission

19.8.16

Bike Dance Flash Mob wants you! Sat. Aug. 20th, 4pm

Dear Critical Mass Vancouver:

UpCYCLEd Stories,
a uniquely Vancouver bike-inspired community musical film project, is in its final phase. For one of the closing scenes in the movie, project lead Sarah Van Borek is facilitating a BIKE DANCE FLASH MOB and all are invited!

When: this Saturday, August 20th, 4pm
Where: The Beaumont Stage (Main & Broadway), as part of the first annual Vancouver Mural Festival

Community members are invited to come on their bikes and learn a short choreography then dance in the street (on their bikes) with the rest of the community and be filmed in one of the final scenes of the UpCYCLEd Stories movie!

UpCYCLEd Stories will have a tent in front of Our Community Bikes 12-4pm where participants can practice the choreography with others before the flash mob.

The bike dance choreography is available online if participants want to practice in advance:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zhynnMS6RI

The dance features the song "On My Bike" by Vancouver-based worldbeat dance band, Roots Roundup. The dance is called "drivetrain" because this is the part of the bike that makes everything move. The dance is inspired by bike safety tips so please be sure to wear your bike helmet! Please bring your friends, family and neighbours - all are welcome!

*Note: Participants are welcome to join even without bikes*

Help us get the word out by sharing the facebook event page:
https://www.facebook.com/events/668986836601027/

For more info about UpCYCLEd Stories:
Hope you can join us for a worldbeat street dance party on bikes!

Best,
Sarah

Sarah Van Borek
UpCYCLEd Stories
Artist in Community
Mount Pleasant Community Centre
1 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC, V5T 3H7
C: 604.723.8429
reduce | reuse | RECREATE!

12.4.16

Speak out against the TPP, keep Canada Sovereign

After 5 long years of secret negotiations, the public is finally being asked to weigh in on the TPP, and major in-person consultations are coming to your city!
The TPP is a dangerous trade and investment deal that will have lasting impacts on our democracy, economy, health, and environment. To stop it we need to take advantage of every opportunity to raise our concerns with it.
The Parliamentary Trade Committee will be visiting select cities to get public feedback on the TPP. They’ll be reporting to Parliament about they heard and making a recommendation to government on whether or not they should pass the TPP. This is a major opportunity to have our voices heard, and our best chance yet to stop the TPP.
Upcoming consultations will be held in
  • Vancouver (April 18)
  • Calgary (April 19)
  • Saskatoon (April 20)
  • Winnipeg (April 21)
If hundreds of us sign up to speak out against the TPP at the hearings, we can show the government how strong public opposition truly is. This will make it impossible for them to approve the deal if they’re going to keep their promise to listen to the public on it.
We can’t miss this opportunity. Register to appear before the Committee today. If you’ve never done something like this before, that’s no problem! After you register, we’ll send you a support kit with details on how the process will unfold, and information on how we’ll help you prepare.
Sources:
House of Commons Standing Committee on International Trade to Hold Hearings in Vancouver, Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg.
http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=0&Ses=0&DocId=8161270

http://www.leadnow.ca/tpp-hearings/

http://canadians.org/blog/council-canadians-co-sponsors-jumbotron-outside-tpp-consultation-vancouver

Stop the TPP

Teach-in: Sat April 16th
Federal Gov't Public Hearing on whether to approve TPP:
Monday April 18th
(Details below)


Our Common Struggle, Making the Links.

Teach in on International Instruments of Corporate Power: TPP, CETA, FIPAs & NAFTA.
Saturday, April 16th

SFU Center for Dialogue, Room 320

520 West Hastings Street, Vancouver

Coast Salish Territories



https://goo.gl/RP9xcy

Governments around the world are working hard to secure and expand the rights and powers of multinational corporations. Their most significant efforts involve the negotiation and ratification of international trade, investment and property rights agreements. Canada is currently engaged with the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the European Union, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) involving 12 pacific rim states and counting, 29 existing Foreign Investment Promotion & Protection Agreements (FIPAs) with 7 being negotiated and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

The negative effects of these agreements are far reaching and opposition to their imposition has  historically been seen as a collective responsibility of various social movements. This one day teach in aims to highlight the various ways in which the expansion of corporate rights impacts communities: corporate bailouts at the expense of social services, promoting the plunder of indigenous lands, undermining action on climate change, exploitation of workers, deterioration of people’s health, threatening food security, displacement of communities, privatization of public resources, limiting internet freedoms and much more.

The day will be provide a panel discussion, keynote presentations and caucus times for people to discuss, learn and plan together.

When
    Saturday, 16 April 2016 from 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM (PDT)
Where
    Morris J Wosk Centre for Dialogue - 580 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC V6B 1L6, Canada

29.3.16

Fwd: PRESS RELEASE: Local Non-Profit Bares All To Raise Funds In New Clothing Donation Campaign

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 29, 2016

 

LOCAL NON-PROFIT BARES ALL TO RAISE FUNDS IN NEW CLOTHING DONATION CAMPAIGN

 

Burnaby, BC — People are used to the idea of donating their unwanted clothing and household items, but a local NPO is encouraging them to even donate the clothes off their back in their latest video campaign. posAbilities, an organization focused on improving the lives of people with developmental disabilities, has begun uploading a series of videos with naked TV/YouTube personality Josh Rimer. The local actor bared all for the campaign in hopes of getting people interested in making donations to their Clothes Drop program.

 

"posAbilities is a great organization that really makes a difference to the lives of the people they serve" says Rimer, who has collaborated with posAbilities on videos in the past. "We wanted to do something fun and a bit shocking that would get people to pay attention and think about donating their used clothing."

 

The initial idea first came through a Simon Fraser University co-op student who brought it forward as a possible way to get interest in their new clothing drive initiative. "The idea seemed a bit outrageous, but we wanted to catch the interest of business owners and the general public" says Jennifer Oliver, Manager of Innovation at posAbilities.

 

"We'd like to get everyone thinking of us when doing their spring cleaning, downsizing, and decluttering. The videos are fun and a taste of the ease that you'll experience working with posAbilities – we're helping people and the planet."   

 

The first video was uploaded this morning and features Rimer running around an office without any clothes on, pleading with a few unsuspecting employees to donate theirs. A second video set in a multi-unit residence will be uploaded tomorrow, followed by a third one in a laundromat the next day. The series will finish with a general information video about the program on Friday, where Rimer will finally be fully clothed.

 

See the first video, and the following ones as they are uploaded, at www.youtube.com/posAbilitiesCA .

 

-30-

 

Media Contacts:

 

Media Contacts:

 

Subject Expert                                               

Jennifer Oliver,                                               

Manager of Innovation                                

phone:604-366-6532                                    

email: joliver@posAbilities.ca                     

 

Alternate Spokesperson

Monique Nelson,

Director of Community Engagement

phone: 604-369-4073

email: mnelson@posabilities.ca

 

About posAbilities

At posAbilities we assist children, youth and adults with disabilities to lead meaningful and healthy lives. We work with families and community partners to deliver a full range of services that grow with the individual, including behaviour consultation, community inclusion, employment and home living. We are actively engaged in creating art, theatre productions and digital media, continuously aspiring to challenge perceptions of ability and to reduce the stigma that is often associated with persons who have developmental disabilities. For more information, please visit: www.posAbilities.ca

 

Monique Nelson,

Director of Community Engagement, posAbilities

• community inclusion • employment • home living • behaviour consultation
t. 778.945.3367 | c. 604.369.4073


7.2.16

Fwd: TPP signed but we’re still winning

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Brittany Smith - Leadnow.ca
Date: Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 10:07 AM
Subject: TPP signed but we're still winning

Under pressure from pro-TPP forces around the world, Canada has just signed this dangerous and outdated legacy of the Harper era.

But don't despair! Signing just unlocks the final stage of the process and it is not legally binding. Parliament still has to vote to ratify the TPP into law. 

Trade Minister Freeland has promised to hold public consultations and a full debate before the TPP is voted on in Parliament.

These consultations will give us a window - time and space to build powerful opposition and stop the TPP. So the real fight against the TPP is just beginning - and you've already kicked off this campaign with a bang. 

On Monday, your donations put a powerful ad in the Hill Times, asking PM Trudeau and Minister Freeland to follow through on their promise and listen to the public before making a decision on the TPP. 

On Wednesday, your donations let us work with our allies in New Zealand to show your opposition to the deal in Downtown Auckland, where the deal was signed. We projected messages from the Leadnow community onto buildings outside of Minister Freeland's hotel, and held anti-TPP banners at a massive rally outside of the signing ceremony.

Pro-TPP forces wanted the signing ceremony to be a triumph of the corporate agenda, but your actions helped to turn it into a show of people-powered strength. All the smiles and news stories couldn't drown out the voices calling the TPP what it really is - a giant corporate power grab. 

We also ran a public opinion poll on the TPP in Canada. It confirmed that most Canadians are unfamiliar with the deal -- and the more they learn about it, the more likely they are to oppose it.1

People in many other countries have already heard more about the deal, and opposition is growing and global. Activists and community groups are being joined by business leaders, academics, scientists, doctors, lawyers, faith groups and even the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights.2

So friends, signing is just the beginning of the final fight against the TPP. As the global corporate lobby is celebrating, a growing groundswell of opposition from communities in Canada and around the world are speaking out against it. 

Trade Minister Freeland is already hearing from tens of thousands of people across the country - nearly 20,000 from the Leadnow community alone in the last two weeks - and we need to keep raising the alarm and building momentum to stop the TPP.

Want to take action now? Please forward this email to a friend and ask them to join you by sending a message into Minister Freeland's consultation process that says "no" to the TPP: http://www.leadnow.ca/reject-tpp

Stay tuned for more in the coming weeks.

And, thanks for all you do.
Brittany, on behalf of the Leadnow.ca team

Sources:

National Opinion poll on the Trans-Pacific Partnership https://s3.amazonaws.com/leadnow/TPP_Research+Results_February+1st+2016_Final.pdf
For Canadian innovators will the TPP mean protection or colonialism http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/rob-commentary/for-canadian-innovators-will-tpp-mean-protection-or-colonialism/article28462854/

 

 

________________________________

Please support the Leadnow.ca community! We're funded by people like you, and our small, dedicated team and growing community make sure your donation goes a long way. Every dollar helps. You can donate online at http://www.leadnow.ca/en/donate

Leadnow.ca is an independent campaigning community that brings Canadians together to hold government accountable, deepen our democracy and take action for the common good. You can follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

10.1.16

Fwd: Happy New Year; Sign and Share the Billion for Bikes Petition


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: BC Cycling Coalition <news@bccc.bc.ca>
Date: Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 11:08 AM
Subject: Happy New Year; Sign and Share the Billion for Bikes Petition
Happy New Year rusl!

Since launching our Cycling for Everyone - Billion for Bikes campaign, we have already made progress.

Sign the Billion for Bikes Petition

Following our submissions, the Climate Leadership Team has included the possibility of using Carbon Tax funding for cycling and walking in their recommendations and the Provincial Finance Committee has recommended investment to expand cycling.

BC Opposition Leader John Horgan says he'd follow the Alberta government new carbon tax plan, which earmarks much of the estimated $3 billion in new revenue in that province for energy-efficiency investments like expanded public transit. While the Alberta plan specifically includes cycling and walking, so far Horgan has not stated publicly that they support using Carbon Tax revenue for cycling. We are following up with him to help ensure BC follows Alberta's lead.

Help us keep the momentum building!

So far, we have around 1800 signatures. We are now striving towards gaining 2500 signatures in January, when the Climate Leadership Action Plan public input process will open.

Please help show our political leaders that there is strong support for cycling in BC:

Sign the Billion for Bikes Petition  
Forward this email to your friends, family and co-workers
Please donate to our Billion for Cycling and Walking Campaign to ensure this ambitious initiative is successful.

The BC Cycling Coalition's ability to push for safer cycling for everyone is powered by your contributions. Reaching out to people, organizations, governments and businesses across this big province building support needed for a Billion for Bikes is a lot of work that requires your generous donations. A big thanks to those of you who have already donated. Much appreciated!
 
Thank you for your support. We greatly appreciate it. We will be in touch in the coming weeks with information about how you can participate in the Climate Leadership public input period. Stay tuned, and keep the momentum moving forward!

Best Regards,

BC Cycling Coalition

http://www.bccc.bc.ca/

  PLEASE DONATE  


http://bccc.bc.ca/donate_everyone


BC Cycling Coalition
http://www.bccc.bc.ca/
-=-=-

British Columbia Cycling Coalition · 15 555 W 12th Ave, City Square PO Box 47104, Vancouver, BC V5Z 3X7, Canada

9.12.15

Fwd: Fraser River coal port approval undermines Paris negotiations

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Laura Benson <dogwood@dogwoodinitiative.org>

This is an international embarrassment.

On the first day of global climate talks in Paris, Port Metro Vancouver
issued its second approval for the Fraser Surrey Docks coal port – setting
the stage for giant Panamax ships to travel up the Fraser River to load
dirty U.S. thermal coal for export to Asia.

The entire world is looking to Paris for meaningful action on climate
change, while at home in B.C. we're promoting the export of the world's
worst carbon fuel to Asia.

Our post-election hopes for positive change are being tarnished by the
cynical Conservative era appointees at Port Metro Vancouver. But there's
still a way to stop this project.

Public pressure is mounting for the port authority to put the proposal on
hold. Two weeks ago Delta MP Carla Qualtrough pledged to contact her cabinet
colleagues to ensure the Fraser Surrey Docks proposal doesn't go ahead
without a fair environmental assessment. In just three days, Dogwood
collected over 5,400 signatures to support her move.

The port leaders are feeling the heat and trying to sneak this one in under
the wire. We can't let them get away with a bogus Environmental Assessment
that ignores climate change and health impacts.


The Beyond Coal team is working to ensure federal and local officials take
action and reign in the rogue port authority, but we can't do it without
you.

Laura Benson, on behalf of the Beyond Coal team

P.S. Like the National Energy Board, Port Metro Vancouver's leadership is
stacked with Conservative government appointees who refuse to accept that
we've moved into a new political era. It's up to us to make them clean up
their act. Please support our work today.

PLEASE DONATE
https://dogwoodinitiative.org/donate/give

Dogwood Initiative - PO Box 8701 - Victoria, BC V8W3S3


"If you have two shirts in your closet, one belongs to you and the other to
the man with no shirt."
~St. Ambrose of Milan

1.12.15

Fwd: [Velolove-Vancouver] Bike helmet laws have little effect reducing head injuries, says UBC study - British Columbia - CBC News


as of Mon Nov 30 2015 02:37:27 GMT-0500 (Eastern Standard Time)
"

Better to build separated lanes than force people to wear a helmet says author of cycling study
CBC News Posted: Nov 06, 2015 4:24 PM PT Last Updated: Nov 06, 2015 4:24 PM PT
Mandatory bike helmet legislation doesn't necessarily reduce cycling-related head injures according to a UBC study.
  The long-held assumption that helmet legislation helps lower the rate of head injuries to cyclists is being challenged by a new report from the University of British Columbia.
  The study published last week in BMJ Open [British Medical Journal] compared data from provinces like B.C. that have introduced mandatory helmet laws to those without them. Although helmet legislation was effective in getting more cyclists to wear helmets, it did not translate into fewer head injuries.

  "Helmet laws didn`t make a difference to hospitalization rates for head and brain injuries," said study author Prof. Kay Teschke.
  Teschke says the study yielded more surprises including that the rate of hospitalization amongst cyclists actually dropped as the rate of cycling went up.
  She says this may be a result of motorist and cyclist getting used to each other as rates of cycling increase, and also a reflection of better and safer cycling infrastructure enticing more people to get on their bikes.
  Professor Kay Teschke say building better cycling infrastructure is a better way to prevent cycling injuries than forcing people to wear helmets. (CBC)
  The report also showed women cyclists are hospitalized at a much lower rate than men who account for nearly 75 per cent of all cycling injuries. Teschke says women, on average, tend to cycle slightly more slowly than men, and choose safer routes, separated bike lanes and quiet streets more often .
  Teschke believes the results of her study support the kind of policy choices made in places like Denmark and Holland, where cycling is prominent.
  "They haven't emphasized helmets at all," she said. "They've put their emphasis on separated infrastructure, making infrastructure that attracts people to cycling. And their injury and fatality rates are quite a bit lower."
Personally: I like being able to have a helmet, but the law about it is bad policy.

19.10.15

You CAN Vote, do it Early Today!

This is your right. Voting this year is more difficult. That is because the ruling "Conservative" Party is anti-democratic and know that they are unpopular - that voter suppression helps them. Perhaps you think this is an exaggeration, but today's voting situation speaks for itself.

Traditionally there were many ways to vote on election day, this because it is always hard to squeeze in, when you are working or otherwise busy, when you can't get to another polling station, etc.

This is the first time on election day you can ONLY vote in your own polling station. All other elections before now allowed you to swear in your vote and show proper ID so that you could vote in a different polling station if you couldn't get to your exact one.

Which polling station do you go to? If you don't already have a voter registration card or yours is not accurate: you need to know your postal code. You need to be on the Elections Canada website. On this website you will find a not simple data heavy web form that will eventually tell you the polling place for you. Polling stations close early this year, most at 7pm here in BC and others, like mobile stations, as early as 1:30.

What is the website is overwhelmed? It surely will be. It was this morning. It's an obvious bottleneck. There aren't any widely available maps showing all the polling stations, so I can't just print a map because I have a good data connection and show it to others. (This would be a good thing to make if you are trying to get out the vote!) Fortunately, each party and 3rd Parties also have websites which list where to vote, so use those if electionscanada is down

Talk to people. Most people remember the polling station from the last election. Together we can figure it out and get people out to defeat this anti-democratic party now in power.

Links:

elections.ca/...Find

votetogether.ca

dogwoodinitiative.org

Depending on where you live, vote strategically. That will mean Liberal or NDP. Of in the very rare exception, Green. Do not rely on national polling averages such as threehundredeight.com. Local polling is more accurate to a specific riding. Leadnow.ca has the best resource for this, and it's members, who have all pledged to vote together strategically to defeat Harper, have chosen (by pre-vote) which party to support in very close ridings so that everyone pulls together and there is a clear victory. Please consider doing this.