Occupy Vancouver complied with a court injunction on Monday by moving to a new site: the B.C. Supreme Court lands.
Almost 500 people marched in solidarity with Occupy Vancouver at noon and helped the Occupiers move to their new location. Occupy Vancouver took over the streets with giant geodesic domes in one hand and a feeling of injustice in the other. The mood today was one of intense nostalgia, reflection and excitement as we dismantled our structures only to set them up across the street.
But the permanence of this new home is already in question. Christy Clark, the B.C. premier, has promised to seek an injunction Tuesday "as soon as the courts open" to force Occupy Vancouver out. Though several other locations are being considered, at some point we must ultimately decide as a collective whether we should comply with the established order or whether we should stand up for our principles and objectives.
A substantial victory was also won on Monday, as 15 homeless people at the Occupation camp were housed with the help of tireless community advocates. If anyone complains that we're not doing enough to draw attention to the "issues" they should realize that: a) homeless people sleeping in tents IS one of the issues; and b) we're in survival mode right now, and have been so for at least two weeks.
It is hard to organize actions when we are constantly threatened and intimidated by the legal system, the police and various levels of government. Occupation sites are facing evictions all across Canada and the U.S. We are obviously a threat to the status quo, so we're on the right path.
The Occupations have not gone on for "too long," they have only begun. As long as the issues remain, so do the Occupiers -- an injunction or a 100 injunctions cannot stop that. Christy Clarke and the B.C. Liberals should be given an eviction notice -- they are certainly a safety hazard.
Jasmine R. Rezaee is a social activist whose work has appeared in rabble.ca and This Magazine. She was involved with Students for a Democratic Society and is currently active in Occupy Vancouver, in unceded Coast Salish territory. She volunteers at the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre. She joined Occupy Vancouver at the very beginning, taking part in her first general assembly on Oct. 8.
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