November 19, 2018
GATINEAU — Independent Jewish Voices Canada (IJV), including its eight student chapters, applauds the Canadian Federation of Students for adopting a resolution in favour of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement at their annual General Assembly today. The resolution follows an endorsement of the BDS campaign by the Federation’s Ontario component in 2014.
“This is a crystal clear sign that the BDS movement is gaining momentum both in Canada and around the world, especially amongst students,” said Corey Balsam, IJV National Coordinator. “The Canadian Federation of Students supported the boycott of apartheid South Africa in the 80s and has once again opted to stand on the right side of history.”
IJV voted to endorse the BDS movement in 2009 as a means of exerting pressure on the Israeli government to respect the human rights of Palestinians. Specifically, the movement calls on Israel to end its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, give equal rights to Palestinian citizens of Israel and accept the right of Palestinian refugees to return.
The Canadian Federation of Students’ resolution follows widespread condemnation of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for conflating BDS activity on university campuses with antisemitism, during his apology speech for turning away Jewish refugees in 1939.
“The idea that BDS creates an unsafe environment for Jewish students is simply unfounded. In making this claim, Trudeau unfairly places the blame for antisemitism on Palestinians and those standing in solidarity with their cause,” said Rudi Barwin, spokesperson for the IJV student chapter at Carleton University. “As a Jewish student and member of IJV, I congratulate the CFS for rejecting the Canadian government’s scapegoating of Palestine solidarity activists and for taking action toward a just-peace in Israel-Palestine. Resolutions like this can change the world for the better.”
For media inquiries, please contact:
Corey Balsam, National Coordinator
Full text of Canadian Federation of Students resolution in support of BDS – November 19, 2018
Be it resolved that the ongoing occupation of Palestine be condemned by the Canadian Federation of Students; and
Be it further resolved that the Canadian Federation of Students endorse the boycotts, divestments, and sanctions campaign; and
Be it further resolved that the Canadian Federation of Students support Palestine-Solidarity organizing nationally by providing in-kind support and financial donations to different Palestine-Solidarity organizations on a case-by-case basis with a limit of $500 per organization; and
Be it further resolved that organizations that receive donations be encouraged to report back within six months of their activities to the Federation; and
Be it further resolved that the Canadian Federation of Students support locals in launching weapons divestment campaigns targeted towards their individual administrations; and
Be it further resolved that the CFS explore existing Boycott, Divestments, Sanctions (BDS) campaigns and organizing resources in order to better support locals with individual organizing, and recommend one for adoption at the next general meeting; and
Be it further resolved that a statement be released to our membership condemning the recent atrocities against Palestinians in Gaza, and reaffirming the Federation’s commitment to BDS and anti-war organizing.