Europe Wide Day of Action Against TTIP 11th October

 

Over 400 actions  in 22 different countries took place on 11th October: The Europe Wide Day of Action Against TTIP. Over 1000 protest in London, Parliament Square.

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ttip=stop-ceta-logoBy Inka Stafrace

Information about the planned actions was illustrated wonderfully on the Stop-TTIP-CETA-TiSA website which promptly crashed on the 10th of October due to an overwhelming amount of hits (220,000 in a day) on this unfunded website ran by three individuals.  They managed to get it running again but without their piece de resistance; the interactive map. Unquestionably an overriding success for the movement.

Occupy London played a big part in out-reach and spreading the word and still does about not only, the day of action,  but also about TTIP itself. It was a day that we showed anyone interested that we are still here, organizing and participating in the change we want to see. We have worked closely with World Development Movement NGO, who helped finance bits and bobs like flyers and banners etc.

So what it TTIP?

occupy-ttipIts a free trade agreement that has as much to do with the corporate take over of democracies all over Europe and the US as it does with trade and services. Please visit this semi crashed site for a clear journey into understanding the deal, and the Occupy London page for informative videos. 

TTIP was initiated in total secrecy and now that it’s existence is known to the public, support for TTIP has become more vocal and sophisticated. Although the finer details of this ‘agreement’  are far from comforting it should be sufficiently disturbing to know that it is still being negotiated in secret. The public and media have no access to the text and MEPs have limited access despite it being stipulated in the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union that they are to be ‘fully informed’ of EC negotiations.

Do you trust corporations to serve your best interests?

 

 

We began the day faced with another demo happening in the same spot!  The Kurds against ISIS demo. We negotiated with them and all went smoothly. They occupied one corner … we kitty kornered from them.

38 degrees people came in force, setting up their tables and giving out flyers.

The banner we worked on for a few days took centre stage . Many protesters involved themselves in holding it and thank heavens for that. As organizers we would not have managed without them.

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The photographers had a field day.

 

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About 1000 people turned up.

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Speeches at the Square

Whands off our democracy-06e set up a ladder and a megaphone for the speakers who included  in order of appearance in livestream below.

John Hilary : War on Want – not on livestream

David Babs : 38 degrees (0:00)

Vica Rogers : Occupy London (2:30)

Sam Lowe : Friends of The Earth (4:35)

Someone from the Kurdish protest to tell about their cause (8:14)

DSC_0517 copyTracey Worcester : Farms not Factories. (9:40)

Housekeeping (14:34)

Annie : Unite the Youth (19:06)

Jan O’Mailey – Keep Our NHS Public (22:11)

Gentleman from the Lewisham Hospital Campaign (27:55)

DSC_0473 copyJean Lambert : MEP Green Party (32:00)

Morten Theyson : World Development Movement (40:02) (Q&A)

Sara Calloway : Global Woman’s Strike (40:41)

Inka Stafrace: Occupy London + Polly Tikke Productions (45:51) (wrap up)

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But there was more… oh so much more!!

After the last speaker spoke, we trundled off onto the street , up onto the bridge with the intent of making our voices heard and doing a ‘banner drop’.

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Once we got onto the bridge , with enormous acknowledgement that we should have thought a few things out through a little more thoroughly we dropped the banner! At least 30 people helped make this possible. The media coverage this action created was moderate on the mainstream press *BBC, and awesome on twitter and other social media.

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It is somewhat amazing the things  us unpaid activists need to do to get the largest free trade agreement ever negotiated covered by the mainstream media. TTIP is set to give corporations the power to sue national governments, if the governments pass laws that negatively effect their investments. These laws would include environmental laws, health and safety laws to name a few. In a weeks time maybe we can get some young man or woman to jump off Big Ben in a tutu with a parachute , with NoTTIP sprayed on the fabric, so that this dangerous ‘trade’ deal stays in the media and is repeated as often as it deserves to be. The fight for our democracy (all be it a deeply flawed one)  is somewhat important to cover, I should think.

To be fair the main stream press have ‘noticed’ it in the last month. It has been being negotiated for over a year but whose counting.  What is heartening to know is that there are many people working hard to stop TTIP both within the establishment and on the grassroots level. They need all the help they can get. The European Citizen’s Initiative against TTIP was rejected by the European Commission but the organizers chose to go through with it anyway to see what the interest is out there. The ECI needs 1,000,000 signatures from all over Europe to transpire and is given over a year to gather them. The Stop TTIP initiative has gathered over 500,000 signatures in less than a month! Join in and be part of the change you want to see. Spread those leaflets, talk to family and friends. The more horrified members of the public there are, the more likely we are to collectively stop TTIP.

 

The short march onto the bridge and the behind the scenes looks at the banner drop!

Images : Fanny Malinen , Polly Tikkle, Peter Marshall. Livestream : Obi-Live

Coverage :
http://www.zdf.de/ZDFmediathek/beitrag/video/2260058/Steinbrueck-TTIP-grosse-Chance#/beitrag/video/2260058/Steinbrueck-TTIP-grosse-Chance

RT embedded .

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-29572475

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-29584889 (note footage taken after rally rather than during it)

More info

http://www.stop-ttip-ceta-tisa.eu/en/

http://www.nottip.org.uk/

http://occupylondon.org.uk/nottip

The End 🙂

 

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