We’re really keen to have the extended whanau come to Thursday nights GA. Some decisions need to be made in terms of where we are at and where to from here. Your input is incredibly valuable to Occupy Christchurch Otautahi.
We’re on the brink of a huge demonstration on Saturday, our home is in need of some love and we are all in need of seeing each other face to face.
Perhaps a good start to the event would be to do a round where everyone has 30 seconds to express their own thoughts and at the end to have a brief silence in order to digest what has been said. From there we can work on what we need to do in order to make the most of this awe inspiring thing we have all been and continue to be a part of.
Kia ora, there are lots of new videos that have been uploaded to our youtube channel lately, so here they are! For a more in depth explanation of each video, go to the video’s youtube page (click the youtube logo in the bottom right corner of the video) and read the video description.
From Saturday the 5th of November, here is footage of a group of us picketing a business supplied by Canterbury Meat Packers, who have been refusing to pay a group of its workers up north at all until they sign new contracts that include pay cuts of up to 30%.
On Thursday the 3rd of November Jacob brought us an amazing bicycle generator; here’s the reveal:
After a bit more tinkering it was ready to charge car batteries on Sunday the 6th of November (also check out Jo’s great badge-making workshop):
Here’s a short video of the start of one of our General Assemblies on the 31st of October:
Finally, here is Regan faceplanting the grass whilst attempting to mow the lawn around our occupation:
Stay tuned for a video of a group of us occupying the CERA offices on Monday!
We had a great picket of a business supplied by Canterbury Meat Packers on Saturday as well as an awesome fireworks display in the evening. On Sunday Jacob finished off his bicycle generator project, so now we have a pseudo-gym that charges a car battery! There were plenty of great workshops on Sunday as well including legal advice from a prominent lawyer, the lessons of Spain 1936 and badge-making.
Yesterday a small group of us joined a protest against the ruthless destruction of Christchurch’s heritage buildings. After a few speeches there was a march which went all the way up to CERA’s reception in level 2 of the HSBC building. Footage of these protests will be uploaded to our youtube account soon; some footage from the weekend has already been uploaded here.
For this week, we have plenty of events planned:
Tuesday 8 November, 6:30pm: Workshop on Self Sufficient Urban Living with Jake!
Friday 11/11/11: Take part in this global event by coming to Occupy Corner at 11am, picking a tree and sitting down to have a think for an hour. It’s sad that we rarely find the time to have a proper think about things in this modern age, so join us as we occupy our own minds for an hour (or however long you like)! Facebook event here
5.30pm Friday; our first nationwide People’s Parliament event! Details on facebook event here
Saturday 12 November: Flash mob! Facebook event here
Sunday 13 November: Sunday market and workshops! Facebook event here
We are also changing our General Assembly time from 8pm to 7pm, starting on Monday the 14th of November. Have a great week, see you soon!
We have a lot planned for this weekend so head down to Occupy Corner if you can and get involved!
Saturday November 5: THREE events planned!
Saturday 5 Nov, 10am – 1pm: Parihaka workshops, free market, music, kai, sign-making Commemorate Parihaka, an important moment in the history of Aotearoa. Parihaka was a peaceful Maori settlement established in 1867 to protest against the repeated illegal land confiscations by the British empire. On the 5th of November, 1881, British soldiers invaded the community and were met with children offering them kai, yet still destroyed the village and raped wahine. We are organising speakers to give talks on Parihaka which will be between 11am and 1pm. More detail at facebook event here
Saturday 5 Nov, 1pm – 6pm: Picket of ANZCO office in support of locked out CMP workers In Palmerston North, 111 workers have been locked out of their workplace at Canterbury Meat Packers with no pay because they refused to accept a pay cut of up to 30% as well as increased work rate from their employers. CMP is part of the multinational ANZCO corporation so at 1pm on Saturday we will bus to their Hornby offices and join with other workers groups to protest against such abhorrent corporate pressure tactics from 2pm. More detail at facebook event here
Saturday 5 Nov, 6pm – late: Free dinner, general korero, outdoor film and Guy Fawkes celebration
After the protest we will return to Occupy Corner for dinner, a general korero (where anyone can discuss the issues that brought us to the occupation), outdoor film screening and fireworks (not necessarily in that order). It’s going to be a great night; join us! More detail at facebook event here
Sunday 6 Nov, 10am – whenever: Community picnic, free market, music, workshops After the success of last Sunday’s community day, we are having another! Come along any time for plenty of things to occupy your day. Throughout the day there will be workshops on the legalities of protest, community initiatives and the Spanish uprising of the 1930s. More info at facebook event here
We’ve had a great weekend down at Occupy Corner; on Saturday the 29th of October we dressed up as Robin Hoods and gave out hugs and flyers at the newly opened Cashel mall, in support the global Robin Hood Tax March (see here for more info). More pictures can be seen here
a free community
Today (Sunday the 30th) we had an awesome community picnic with live music, plenty of workshops, free kai, and a free market where people could bring their unwanted possessions and get other people’s items for free. More pictures can be seen here
Here’s a great video of Adam from The Eastern playing for us (including a bit of a campsite tour and footage of our free market):
Workshop on the historical labour movements of Aotearoa New Zealand:
On Monday the 24th of October, Occupy Ōtautahi Christchurch hosted a respectful walk around part of the city’s red zone cordon. The walk celebrated Labour Day and acknowledged the difficult year Cantabrians have had. It succeeded in uniting our local community as we rebuild our lives and suburbs, and has paved the way for future events.
Around 150 people met at Occupy Corner from 11am to enjoy music, kai, conversation, coffee, sport and sign-making before the walk began at 12pm.
A great community atmosphere before the walk
At 12pm the group set off to the Bridge of Remembrance. Children with scooters raced out in front whilst people met their neighbours and made new connections behind. No megaphones were used during the walk itself, and Occupy Ōtautahi Christchurch once again maintained a peaceful demonstration without disturbing the public.
Peaceful road crossing
At the Bridge of Remembrance a minute’s silence was held to remember the tough year our city has been through and the many people who tragically lost their lives in the February earthquakes. Flowers were provided for people to place at the cordon as a mark of respect.
A time for reflection
The group then walked along the river before heading to the Art Gallery for an open mic forum. A wide range of people shared their own personal stories and concerns whilst children and dogs chased bubbles blown across the paving stones.
Some well-earned shade along the Avon river
A true public forum
There was a strong sense of unity as everyone walked back to Occupy Corner after the open mic. After the many inspiring speeches from everyday Cantabrians, individuals who thought that they were alone in sensing something wrong in the world realised that there is actually an entire community of people who feel the same.
Back at the corner there was an impressive amount of free kai prepared, including a sausage sizzle, potato salad and pasta dishes, as well as gluten free and vegan options. The awesome tunes of Soul Liberation rounded out the afternoon along with games and relaxation.
Part of Soul Liberation delivering sweet music
Here’s a great overall video of the day:
It was an amazing day of reflection, smiles and community spirit. It is clear that community engagement is vitally needed after our year of earthquakes; Occupy Ōtautahi Christchurch has provided a safe and peaceful community center where people can enjoy free kai and coffee, meet like-minded companions, voice their opinions in a true democracy, and look towards the future with hope instead of worry.
Let’s hope it continues.
A welcoming environment for all
Don’t worry if you missed out on our Labour Day event; Occupy Ōtautahi Christchurch has organised events for both days this weekend!
On Saturday the 29th there is a march to support the RobinHood tax proposal whilst Sunday the 30th will hold a community picnic, complete with a “free market” to exchange all of your unwanted items! Check out the Event page on this website or the Facebook events for more information (Saturday march here, Sunday picnic here).
As well as that, come down to Occupy Corner anytime for coffee, kai, and conversation. While many of us have work, family or study commitments that prevent us from being there full time, there’s always a group of friendly faces ready to say kia ora!
“On Labour Day, Occupy Christchurch has sent an open invitation for all, to join us on a peaceful and respectful march around the CBD cordon. We wish to commemorate those that lost their lives, acknowledge those that continue to suffer both physically and emotionally in our city, and celebrate the day for workers. The march will begin at 11am, at Occupy Corner: South Hagley Park, near the bus exchange.
The issues closer to home are the issues that cities around the World also share. Our beaches are covered in oil; politicians are attacking workers rights while ignoring correct democratic processes; twenty-nine miners remain in our soil; our public services are being stripped while early child care is being blamed for public debt.
Here in Christchurch we are bearing the brunt of a privatised rescue plan, where the biggest bidder gains the contracts and then scrimp and save on the final product. The result: a community with no clear idea for their future; and CERA which has pushed aside our democratically elected body ECan; and private insurance companies which are bailed-out in excess of a billion of our tax paid dollars.
How much longer can we accept this attack on democracy and stand by while private pockets soak up public wealth?”
Occupy Otautahi-Christchurch is planning a march around the Red Zone on Labour Day, this coming Monday. We will begin at “Occupation Corner”, where we are based, and make our way around the Red Zone to the Christchurch Art Gallery. We will lay flowers and other marks of respect and invite short speeches. We’ll then return to Occupation Corner for refreshments, discussion and festivities.