Quebec protesters start tour at Ontario universities
July 13, 2012
As the pots and pans take a summer break from the streets of Montreal, leaders of Quebec’s huge, headline-grabbing student protests are in Ontario to share their strategies with 10 universities during a week-long tour that began Thursday night at the University of Ottawa.
One of the panel members is Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, a well-known face of the student movement and spokesperson for CLASSE, the most militant of the student groups involved.
“For us, it’s kind of a responsibility as activists, to share what we have learned,” he says. “There is a lot of curiosity around our capacity to mobilize so many people.”
Nadeau-Dubois, who is only attending the Ottawa event, says there is no reason that students could not stage an effective strike in Ontario — but says, “Ontario students need to find their own reason to fight.”
As in Quebec, that unifying issue could be high tuition fees.
“(Ontario students) have the highest tuition fees in the country. We have seen (an) increase of up to 71 per cent since 2006. We’ve seen a government committed to reducing tuition instead of increasing them this fall,” says Sarah Jayne King, head of the Ontario chapter of the Canadian Federation of Students.