Justice is indivisible: Faculty for Palestine in solidarity with Black-led justice movements against racism and police violence

Floyd George Mural in Milwaukee. Painted Thursday, June 4, 2020, as a collective artists and community effort.    Photo by Graham Kilmer, and posted June 5, 2020, on UrbanMilwaukee.

Faculty for Palestine (F4P Canada) expresses unwavering solidarity with Black liberation movements, and allied mobilizations of other oppressed people, demanding justice in the face of racial terror, criminalization, surveillance, incarceration and murder of Black life in Canada and the US. We urge our members and supporters to participate in the mobilizations (while practicing COVID-19 safety precautions) and/or to provide concrete material and political support.

We heed the calls from the mass mobilizations in the streets of Canada and the US as well as from our allied organizations, USACBI and the BDS National Committee (BNC) , the Palestinian coalition leading the global BDS movement. BNC has asked Palestinian solidarity organizations “to stand with the Movement for Black Lives and other Black-led organizations in their righteous struggle for justice.” This current rebellion is part of a long tradition of Black radical resistance that has inspired liberation movements globally, including BDS and the broader Palestinian justice project.

The US Black intifada comes in the wake of the racist police murders of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Tony McDade in Tallahassee, Breonna Taylor in Louisville, to name only the most recent in a very long list of such murders, including those of Black queer and trans people. In Canada, the death of an Afro-Indigenous woman, Regis Korchinski-Paquet, killed during a police intervention in her Toronto apartment, joins a long list of murders, historical neglect and profiling of Black, Indigenous and other racialized individuals. In just the last two months, Canadian police forces have murdered five Indigenous people: Eishia Hudson, Jason Collins, Stewart Kevin Andrews, Everett Patrick and Chantel Moore. In addition to endemic anti-Black racism , we also acknowledge the disturbing resurgence of anti-migrant, anti-Asian/anti-Chinese, anti-Muslim, anti-Arab and anti-Latinx pandemic racisms. We mourn the death of the unarmed Palestinian, Iyad Halak, shot dead on Saturday by Israeli police.

Faculty for Palestine stands with the families of the murdered, sharing their demands for prompt and full investigations into the deaths of their loved ones, and their calls for justice.

The white settler colonies of the US and Canada were built on Black enslavement, Indigenous dispossession, racial capitalism, indentured and migrant labour, and patriarchal social relations. Contemporary protests reflect outrage at historical and ongoing white supremacy and at militarized policing to protect property and repress dissent. Justice cannot come through meaningless calls for police reform. We acknowledge the work of Black and other racialized activists and scholars who have elaborated critical new frameworks through decades of work.

• F4P therefore affirms its full support of: abolition and divestment from prisons, policing, and immigration detention; defunding police in favour of social investment in peoples’ needs; decolonization, redress and reparations for historic and ongoing violence against Black, Indigenous, migrant and racialized people.

Faculty for Palestine opposes the accelerating convergence of US and Israeli racial projects. Concretely, this includes exchange programs between Israeli occupation forces and US police, ICE, border patrol, and FBI agents to train, share technologies, and exchange worst practices including racial profiling, mass surveillance, spying, shoot-to-kill, detention and deportation. Canada is not an exception . In 2005, 32 police chiefs from across Canada travelled to Israel for an Israeli police and state-sponsored mission to deepen and further militarize security ties through joint police trainings and trade shows in high-tech security products. Further, and in line with U.S. state anti-divestment efforts, both the Conservatives and Liberals in Canada have advanced legislation to silence growing support for the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

As a Palestinian solidarity organization, F4P calls for ending all missions and training exchanges of Canadian and US police forces, law enforcement, and border patrol with the Israeli apartheid regime and its occupation forces. We recommit to working with Palestinian prisoner support and human rights organizations, such as Addameer , and with all those detained and imprisoned. We rededicate support for the Birzeit University Right2Education campaign, in solidarity with Palestinian students and faculty subjected to arrests, beatings and imprisonment by the Israeli occupation forces. And we continue to work with the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) and USACBI in struggle to end apartheid, institutionalized racism, policing and campus militarization.

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