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Brent Patterson

Brent Patterson is a political activist and writer. He has worked in solidarity with revolutionary Nicaragua, advocated for the rights of prisoners in jails and federal prisons, taken part in civil disobedience actions in Toronto's financial district and at the Ontario legislature, and participated in street protests at the Battle of Seattle and at UN climate summits. He supported cross-country activism at The Council of Canadians for almost 20 years. Brent has a BA in political science from the University of Saskatchewan and an MA in international relations from York University. He lives in Ottawa on the traditional, unceded and unsurrendered territories of the Algonquin Nation.

Blog - Brent Patterson May 19
A Lockheed Martin F-35 jet on display in Germany in 2018. Image: Lutz Blohm/Flickr
Brent Patterson | Global spending on arms could decline due a drop in the price of oil, pandemic related debt and the imperative of a Green New Deal. How does Canada's plan to buy fighter jets by 2022 fit into this?
Blog - Brent Patterson May 14
Land defender Freda Huson. Image: Unist'ot'en Camp/Video Screenshot/YouTube
Brent Patterson | Does the Trudeau government want a seat on the Security Council enough to follow a resolution from the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination?
Blog - Brent Patterson May 8
Anti-war protesters during one of the first Mother's Days in history. Image: bravenewfoundation/Video Screenshot/YouTube
Brent Patterson | This Mother's Day let us recall the radical origins of the day and the women who proclaimed it to be a day to challenge war and militarism.
Blog - Brent Patterson May 4
Armed RCMP officer trespasses on unceded Wet'suwet'en territory in October 2019. Image: Unist'ot'en Camp/Video Screenshot/Twitter
Brent Patterson | While the Trudeau government's ban on military-grade weapons in Canada is needed, it should extend to this country's increasing arms export industry as well.
Blog - Brent Patterson April 23
The Security Council chamber from the vantage point of the president of the council. Image: United Nations Photo/Flickr
Brent Patterson | With the vote in June on Canada's bid for a Security Council seat, now would be an ideal time for the Trudeau government to affirm the role of human rights defenders.
Blog - Brent Patterson April 18
Image: UNclimatechange/Flickr
Brent Patterson | The G7 is meeting regularly by video conference, so why not hold a similarly urgent summit to slash carbon pollution and fossil fuel subsidies?
Blog - Brent Patterson April 17
Eurofighter Typhoon F-2000A. Image: Andrea Graziadio​/Flickr
Brent Patterson | The Guardian recently reported on BAE Systems profiting from the Saudi war on Yemen, but Canadian mainstream media hasn't yet made the connection to the Canada Pension Plan.
Blog - Brent Patterson April 12
Image: Ibrahim Qasim/Wikimedia Commons
Brent Patterson | Canadian foreign minister endorses call for global ceasefire the day after he lifts restrictions on new arms exports to Saudi Arabia.
Blog - Brent Patterson April 6
Activist and actress Shirley Douglas in 2006. Image: frank saptel/Flickr
Brent Patterson | Shirley Douglas was a champion of public health care, nuclear disarmament and the Black Panther breakfast program.
Blog - Brent Patterson April 2
Trans Mountain pipeline construction continues despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Image: Kanahus Manuel/Twitter
Brent Patterson | The World Health Organization says that climate change increases the risk of contagious diseases, yet this pandemic is seeing increased state subsidies for oil and gas.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 29
A worker protest at Amazon in Minnesota, December 2018
Brent Patterson | The coronavirus pandemic has made unjust power relations all the more evident, but how can we organize while self-isolating at home?
Blog - Brent Patterson March 27
Image: Charles Michel/Twitter
Brent Patterson | Billions of dollars have been wasted over the years on two-day G20 summits. The coronavirus pandemic shows they can be held practically for free.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 25
Image: Defence Images/Flickr
Brent Patterson | Despite the pandemic, the production of F-35 fighter jets continues in Italy and the U.S., while Quebec deems "defence manufacturing" an essential service.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 21
A protester holds a sign at a 2017 anti-pipeline rally in Vancouver. Image: William Chen/Wikimedia Commons
Brent Patterson | Given the twin crises of the coronavirus pandemic and climate breakdown, it is all the more essential for Canada to uphold its human rights obligations.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 19
Image: Koozma J. Tarasoff
Brent Patterson | Even after the pandemic was declared, CADSI stated its arms show would continue, but now they say they will make an updated announcement on April 1.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 15
A migrant detention centre in Texas, June 2019. Image: Wikimedia Commons
Brent Patterson | Will Canada suspend the Safe Third Country Agreement during the coronavirus pandemic to uphold human rights and global public health?
Blog - Brent Patterson March 13
Image: Brent Patterson
Brent Patterson | In a shocking decision, the organizers of CANSEC say they still intend to convene a trade show in Ottawa that could bring together 12,000 people from 55 countries.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 7
San Luis de Palenque, Colombia. Image: Wikimedia Commons
Brent Patterson | Concerns are being raised about a Toronto-based oil company's contract with the Colombian army following community protests against its operations.
Blog - Brent Patterson March 6
Image: Brent Patterson
Brent Patterson | Those who buy and sell arms will be in town on May 27-28, but a major conference and protest says it's time to cancel CANSEC.
Blog - Brent Patterson February 27
Image: Gitxsan Huwilp Government/Facebook
Brent Patterson | Concerns about police violence, nation-to-nation relationships and the right to free, prior and informed consent increase following arrests.
Blog - Brent Patterson February 19
Image: Pavel Vanka/Flickr
Brent Patterson | The CANSEC arms fair in Ottawa will be a key moment to mobilize against the Trudeau government's planned multi-billion dollar purchase of fighter jets.
Blog - Brent Patterson February 15
Image: TOWetsuwetenSolidarity/Twitter
Brent Patterson | The rail blockades in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en land defenders could be a learning moment for Extinction Rebellion and other social justice movements.
Blog - Brent Patterson February 14
Image: PBI Canada
Brent Patterson | Mayan Q'eqchi'-xinka healer and feminist Lorena Cabnal on body-land territory, the struggle against patriarchy and extractivism, and the power of ancestral memory.
Blog - Brent Patterson February 10
Image: Unist'ot'en Camp/Facebook
Brent Patterson | Wet'suwet'en land defenders are facing many of the same risks and patterns experienced by environmental human rights defenders in Latin America and around the world.
Blog - Brent Patterson January 27
Unisto't'en camp calls for legal observers. Image: Peace Brigades Canada/Twitter
Brent Patterson | Lawyers raise concerns about restricted access to Wet'suwet'en territory hindering the ability to train legal observers to document human rights abuses by the RCMP.
Blog - Brent Patterson January 17
Land defenders at Wet'suwet'en Access Point on Gidimt'en Territory. Image: Wet'suwet'en Access Point on Gidimt'en Territory/Facebook
Brent Patterson | Forty per cent of the human rights defenders killed in 2019 were working on land rights, Indigenous peoples' rights and environmental rights.
Blog - Brent Patterson January 14
Image: Wet'suwet'en Access Point on Gidimt'en Territory/Facebook
Brent Patterson | It is essential that Canada uphold its constitutional and international human rights obligations to the Wet'suwet'en Nation.
Blog - Brent Patterson December 3
Protesters at COP21 in Paris. Image: John Englart/Flickr
Brent Patterson | As COP25 kicks off and the House of Commons reconvenes this week, Brent Patterson breaks down the numbers behind the Trudeau government's failure on climate policy.
Blog - Brent Patterson October 27
Image: Peace Brigades International
Brent Patterson | Colombian human rights defenders to talk fracking and climate change at public forums in Ottawa, Vancouver and Nanaimo this November.
Blog - Brent Patterson October 25
Chilean protests in 2019. Image: Jorge Morales Piderit/Wikimedia Commons
Brent Patterson | What are the Canadian links to the social uprising in Chile that has claimed at least 18 lives over the past seven days?