ACTION @ OPIRG
What role do campaigns play at OPIRG?
Campaigns are central to the functioning of OPIRG. We look to support campaigns that promotea specific issue pertaining to progressive political organizing and anti-oppressive, anti-colonial, anti-imperialist, social, economic and environmental justice. These campaigns should be dedicated to enacting change on campus and/or in the broader community. Groups or clubs working on campaigns receive funding from OPIRG and access to OPIRG"s resources, such as training, workshops and strategic guidance. OPIRG York is committed to change at York University but we ALSO envision larger community interaction. We work to blend student organizing with grassroots activism to ensure broad social and environmental change.
General Assemblies Now - The General Assemblies Now campaign is an initiative of the Revolutionary Student Movement to mobilize and agitate mass campaigns to bring the general assemblies model to the decision-making process of campus-based student unions. The goal is to bring direct democratic decision making into the student union decision making process and allow more grassroots participation that is not bogged down by bureaucratic interventions. This model is already widely used in the Quebecois post-secondary system and was instrumental during the Quebec Maple Spring of 2012.
Action Keele - Action Keele is working to organize bus riders on the Keele Street corridor to fight for improved conditions on buses and other forms of public transit. They are also looking at doing organizing work in areas like education and healthcare.
YU Divest - The goal of YU Divest is to get the York University Board of Governors to divest from arms manufacturers.
Fossil Free York - Fossil Free York is a group of undergrads, grad students, faculty and staff calling on York University to divest from fossil fuel companies. We are pushing the university to develop more socially and environmentally conscious investment policies. Beyond this campaign, we would like to work towards a carbon-neutral campus and support other campus environmental initiatives.
Fight for $15 and Fairness - Fight for $15 and Fairness is a coalition of York University students, faculty, staff, workers, and other allies who organize around the Ontario-wide "Fight for $15 and Fairness" campaign. Our objectives are to support the campaign's call for a $15 an hour statutory minimum wage for all workers in Ontario, along with 7 paid sick days, fair scheduling, and other labour law reform. We seek to push York University and other employers located on its campuses to voluntarily implement the campaign's demands for all employees immediately and undertake political activities that further the campaign's goals.
Oats for Breakfast - The Oats for Breakfast podcast interviews activists, campaigners and scholars about the problems that we face as a society and how we might go about addressing them. The goal of the podcast is to provide a forum for critical discussion about social justice.
Cinema Politica York - Cinema Politica York programs free film screenings on the last Tuesday of the month at 12:30 in Nat Taylor Cinema (N102 Ross). We seek to provide a forum for discussion of different social and environmental justice issues which can be controversial and challenging. We do not believe we have the answers, but seek to create a space to discuss choice, perspective, and ideologies on issues raised in the films we screen.
Tools for Change - Tools for Change hosts over 20 workshops a year to help individuals develop skills to champion social, economic, and environmental justice. Staff and active volunteers of our community partners can attend for free or by donation. This includes students from University of Toronto, York University, George Brown College and OCAD University.
Some of the workshops we offer include: De-escalation and Non-Violent Communication, Conflict Resolution Training, Facilitating Great meetings, Campaign Planning 101, Advanced Campaign Planning, Alliances and Coalition Building, Avoiding Activist Burnout, Community Organizing, Public Speaking, Research Skills for Activists, Media Workshops, Social Media for Maximum Impact, Know Your Rights, How to Organize a Great Direct Action, Graphic Design Fundamentals, Grassroots Fundraising, Radical Accessible Movements, Anti-Oppression 101, Grassroots Financial Management and many more.