CARRY FORWARD THE MOMENTUM
Dear friends and allies,
On October 22 to 24, 2010, a historic conference will take place in Montreal which aims to consolidate and move forward the movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israeli apartheid.
In 2005, over 170 Palestinian civil society organizations, from trade unions to women’s groups to refugee organizations, issued a call to international civil society to engage in a comprehensive BDS campaign against apartheid Israel until Israel complies with international law and respects Palestinian human rights. This call for BDS explicitly takes its inspiration from the global boycott movement which helped to end apartheid in South Africa in the 1990s.
Several Palestine solidarity organizations in Montreal have formed a committee to organize a conference intended to carry forward the momentum for BDS, which is growing daily around the world. This conference is being organized in collaboration with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) in Palestine (www.bdsmovement.net).
We are currently finalizing the plans for the conference; please see the attached conference schedule to get an idea of what is planned so far. At this time, we are approaching individuals as well as organizations and businesses to ask for their endorsement of the 2010 BDS Conference. We are also requesting donations, which are essential to making this grassroots conference a success.
We need your financial support! Our estimated budget for this historic conference is approximately $30,000 (please see attached budget). This is the amount required to host a conference of this scope. Confirmed International guests already include Omar Barghouti of the Palestinian Academic and Cultural Boycott Initiative (PACBI) and the
BDS National Committee (BNC), from Ramallah, Palestine, and Bongani Masoku of the Confederation of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), from Johannesburg, South Africa.
We are still confirming the participation of other international BDS activists, including a member of the Irish Confederation of Trade Unions, a professor and feminist activist from Birzeit University in Palestine, Detroit hip hop artist and BDS activist Invincible, and BDS activists from France and Norway.
In order to encourage the maximum level of participation and to keep the conference accessible to the public, we will require expensive services such as simultaneous interpretation in English, French, and Arabic, as well as many other logistical requirements, including promotional materials, conference programs, transportation, billeting for attendeees, and food. All of these elements will go into making this major conference a success!
The 2010 BDS Conference is a huge undertaking, but if as many individuals and organizations as possible can all make a donation, we are confident that we can reach our goal of approximately $30,000. We need your help to make this exciting conference happen!
Please see page 3 for more information on endorsements and donations.
Goals of the conference
The following are the main objectives of the 2010 BDS Conference:
1. To bring together individuals and organizations from all sectors within Québec and Canadian civil society in
support of the Palestinian call for BDS, in order to expand this campaign in Québec and Canada;
2. To consolidate and carry forward the BDS work already underway in the trade union, academic, cultural, and
consumer sectors, particularly in Québec;
3. To facilitate communication between different campaigns and organizations in Québec and Canada, in order
to coordinate on existing and future BDS campaigns and actions;
4. To raise public awareness and engage in popular education about the BDS campaign, its history, goals, and
We look forward to your support for this historic conference, which we are confident will be an important
step in the path to a free Palestine!
The BDS 2010 Conference Organizing Committee
The BDS 2010 Conference Organizing Committee is made up of members of College and University Workers
United (CUWU), the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), La Coalition pour la justice en Palestine
(UQAM), Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR), Tadamon! and member organisations of the Coalition
for Justice and Peace in Palestine.
Information on Endorsements and Donations
Please contact [email protected] to add your organization’s name to the list of endorsers.
If you would like to receive more information on the conference as the schedule, speakers and
other details are confirmed, request to have your address added to the conference info email
To make a donation to the conference organizing fund, cheques may be made out to “Congrès
BDS 2010” and mailed to:
BDS Conference 2010
4755 van Horne, suite 110
Donations may also be made online by clicking the “Donate” link on our website:
You may also contact us at [email protected] or (514) 621-9414.
If you’d like to get involved in organizing the conference, please email [email protected] to
find out about our next meeting.
Thank you for your support and your generosity!
activists from France and Norway.