A Thematic History of AAP - Dec. 2009 - present
I. Recruitment & Fund-Raising:
1. Initially: six contributors giving donations of $50.00 per month at meetings ► equal number of members living below poverty line receiving $50.00 each month.
2. Third group included in AAP by consensus--- those living above poverty line but too vulnerable economically to give a full $50.00 per mo. (give what they can (students & contract workers).
3. Fund-raising efforts (mostly informal and one formal effort to write proposal to access a synodical grant to fund a networking banquet at St. John’s Kitchen).
4. Seeking middle-income or otherwise contributing members to allow us to recruit more members who live below the poverty line.
II. Research Advocacy:
1. The AAP has on numerous occasions drawn up critical responses to the ad nauseum government anti-poverty plans/reports (notably recent SARC reports, re: Special Diet, CSUMB (Community Start Up and Maintenance Benefit). Participated in the Save the CSUMB campaign
2. Frequent letters to the editor(local newspapers).
3. Speeches by invitation in university classes, before particular groups, churches.
4. Presentations at Kitchener Council and Regional Council Meetings on poverty related issues, including the proposed Casinos, and the upcoming meeting on the bus fare increase.
5. Publication of poverty-related articles; 2 recent examples can be found on our website:
i. March Against Monsanto
ii. Critique of 2013 Budget
III. Before Government Bodies—Appeals:
1. Municipal: appeals before Region re: budget priorities. Provincial: cordial letters/visits to John Milloy’s office early on + meetings with Catherine Fife
2. Signing of many petitions, some which we organized, such as the Transit Access 4 All petition against the recent proposed bus fare increases. Oz spoke on July 3, 2013 on CBC regarding this issue.
1. Poverty Industry: Social Planning Council & Poverty Free Ontario: We’ve gone to their events, supported their campaigns. Partial Success: We use Poverty Free’s excellent research & we are still part of their coalition.
2. Hands-On Allies: We have a working relationship with the younger more involved on-the-ground POVERTY MAKES US SICK (PMUS)
3. Local Labour: This effort has been progressing via our Common Front/”We Are Ontario” efforts; attended Common Front organizational efforts in both London & Toronto. Assisted in launch of the local Common Front (Labour & Community Groups)Presented at the OFL / District Labour Council’s People’s Budget initiative
4. OCAP- We endorsed fully the OCAP demands making them our own & our PMUS allies are linked “formally” with OCAP.
V. Direct Action:
1. Strictly as AAP (or more often with PMUS & other allies we occupied John Milloy’s office to oppose Liberal anti-poverty plans. Last efforts—with union (CUPE) allies to support CSUMB + later protest using Nativity Format.
2. Joining mass rallies + demos locally & in Toronto: Day of Action Against Poverty, “Melt the Freeze” - minimum wage campaign to increase the minimum wage to 10% above the poverty line, or $14 per hour … $10.24 in a block of ice delivered to John Milloy, joined One Billion Rising to End Violence Against Women and co-organized with PMUS, “Poverty is Violence! March & Rally, joined OFL Rally and Anti-Poverty March: Confront the Liberal Party Leadership Convention
3. A brief bank occupation.
4. Protests supporting First Nation Rights.
5. Leafleting (including recent protest against bus fare increases)
6. Provincial elections & grading candidates (including Ray of Hope action(s)—with PMUS.
7. Brief occupation of campaign offices (Milloy, McMeekin, etc.).
VI. Personal Advocacy Efforts for Particular Individuals:
1. More than 10 visits with ODSP folk, contract employees or rental issue folk to bureaucrats or politicians to lend small group support for folk facing such intimidating tactics.
For more information on the Alliance Against Poverty (AAP), contact firstname.lastname@example.org