As part of the global days of action against the new World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial, people from across the Pacific Northwest will be converging in downtown Portland to speak out against the proposed expansion of failed "free trade" policies and to demand the prioritization of human needs over corporate greed.
That week, the World Trade Organization will be holding its largest negotiations on international trade and investment in many years. During the new WTO conference, government officials and corporate lobbyists will be promoting the expansion of business-as-usual trade policies as a solution to, rather than a cause of, the global economic and environmental crises. On their agenda is the expansion of pacts that would:
* Cause further offshoring of local jobs
* Prohibit new banking regulations designed to prevent the next financial crisis
* Force global warming policies to conform with restrictive commercial agreements
* Expand agricultural practices that push small farmers off their land and force migration
* Require countries to accept imported foods and consumer goods that fail to meet local safety standards
We need to fight back. This latest WTO Ministerial -- only the fourth in the past decade -- falls on the exact 10-year anniversary of the hugely-successful Seattle WTO protests. It is time to reclaim the "Spirit of Seattle," come together as affected communities and take control over the policy decisions that affect our economic and ecological well-being. As part of this resistance, a broad coalition of over 60 labor, environmental, faith, human rights and community organizations across Oregon is organizing a large-scale march and indoor rally in Portland for Saturday, December 5, 2009 -- the largest such demonstration in the Pacific Northwest. Similar actions will be held that week in cities and towns throughout the globe.
Saturday, December 5 * Downtown Portland
12:00 Noon - Gather at Tom McCall Waterfront Park (under the Hawthorne Bridge)
1:00 pm - March to the World Trade Center, Federal Building and Wells Fargo Building
2:00 pm - Indoor Rally and Concert at Portland State University
Join the global movement saying "NO" to the WTO by participating in the "D5" march and rally. For information on buses and caravans, volunteer opportunities, educational events and other background items, please visit: www.december5.org