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National and Branch News

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WFMC Annual Members Meeting and PeaceQuest events

The weekend of November 10th and 11th was a busy one for World Federalists at a series of events held in Kingston in conjunction with PeaceQuest.

On Saturday, November 10th, PeaceQuest hosted “Imagining Peace: A Vision for Canada,” which included a keynote address by Paul Rogers. Rogers was also presented with WFMC’s World Peace Award and a reception was held in his honour.

The WFMC Annual Members Meeting was held on November 11th. A number of new members were welcomed to the Board, including Scott Cooper, John Daniele, Erika Richter, Laura Schnurr, Zac Myers, and Ian Waddell.

Also on the 11th, some WFMC members joined PeaceQuest’s event, “The World Remembers: An afternoon for peace,” a Remembrance Day event marking the centenary of the 1918 armistice and “designed to help participants reflect on the

tragedy of war and imagine how we can contribute to building peace.”

PeaceQuest is a non-profit, non-denominational, and nonpartisan organization that supports and facilitates peace-building initiatives across Canada. PeaceQuest is a project of the World Federalist Foundation.

Warren Allmand Lecture Series

In October, the inaugural lecture in the Warren Allmand Lecture Series was held in Montreal, with more than 250 people attending. John Ralston Saul spoke on the topic, “The Fight for Freedom of Expression Around the World: A Personal Account.” Ralston Saul is President Emeritus of PEN International and the author of many books, including Voltaire’s Bastards and The Unconscious Civilization.

The Warren Allmand Lecture Series will be an annual event celebrating Warren Allmand’s life and achievements and the causes he espoused through a lecture given by a prominent Canadian. Former president of the World Federalist Movement –

Canada (2004-2016), as well as the recipient of WFMC’s World Peace Award (1990) and a member of the World Federalists since 1961, Allmand had a long career as a politician as well as a supporter of social justice and human rights.

Montreal

The branch continues to host coffee and discussion meetings on current events topics such as sanctions against Venezuela, cryptocurrency, and the Mali peacekeeping mission. As well, the Marie-Berthe Dion Issues Action Group (IAG) meets to discuss and write letters to request government action on items such as a national strategy to combat marine plastic pollution and the International Criminal Court’s preliminary

investigation in Myanmar and Bangladesh regarding the genocide against the Rohingya.

In September, members from the branch participated in a Peace Day tree planting, lunch, and then a talk from Monique Cuillerier, of WFMC’s National Office, on feminist foreign policy. 

As part of McGill Community for Lifelong Learning, Scott Cooper led ten group sessions on the Parliament of Man. The last class included WFMC Board Chair John Trent speaking on United Nations reform

Toronto

The Toronto branch recently held their annual general meeting. John Daniele is now the branch president. Following the AGM, WFMC National President Walter Dorn gave a presentation.

Toronto Branch members represented WFMC at the international conference “No War 2018” in Toronto in September. During the summer, Richard Horlick led a discussion

on the proposed United Nations Parliamentary Assembly.

The Branch has launched a web site, https://wfmc-toronto.org/.

Victoria

The Victoria branch has hosted talks on a variety of topics. In January, Dr. Mary Wynne Ashford spoke on “North Korea and the USA: Empty Rhetoric or Nuclear Threat”. Dr Ashford participated in the Vancouver Summit on North Korea.

In April, Green Party leader Elizabeth May spoke on “Is Canada Back?” with her personal assessment of how Canada is performing on the international stage. Her talk covered a range of issues, including climate change.

Michael Wheatley gave a presentation in September on the topic “Voting Systems and Your Future” about proportional representation versus first past the post and included a detailed explanation of the different proportional representation systems.

In October, Guy Dauncey spoke about “Crisis Passion and Action: The Climate Crisis Needs You.” The talk was followed by a brainstorming session to identify actions individuals can take to spur politicians to address the issue.

Vancouver

In November, WFMC Board Member Ian Waddell launched his latest book, Take the Torch: A Political Memoir at the Vancouver Art Gallery, about his life as a lawyer, an NDP Member of Parliament, a provincial cabinet minister, and a film producer. Waddell endeavours “to pass on some of the lessons I learned about setting goals for social change and the methods to use to get there … debating, protesting, and marching, … writing op-ed pieces for newspapers, getting elected, taking on prime ministers,

dictators and kings, grabbing maces, lobbying diplomats in the lobby of the United Nations, and bucking your own party.”

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