By Michael E. Miller
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Munzenrieder
By Sabrina Rodriguez
By Michael E. Miller
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Luther Campbell
By Kyle Munzenrieder
The arrival of the FTAA ministerial meetings brings not only a rush of official representatives, but a rush of activists, radicals, and protesters from all corners of the country as well as all around the hemisphere. Buses, vans, and charter planes will debark onto Miami soil starting this weekend, the 14th and 15th. The highlight of the unofficial participants is a rally on Thursday afternoon, where groups like the Green Party, the Communist Party, industrial workers unions from the U.S., rural workers groups from South and Central America, and even animal-rights groups dressed as dolphins will march through downtown displaying thousands of reasons why the FTAA will ruin the lives of thousands of people in the Western Hemisphere. High-profile musical acts chime in Wednesday night at the People's Gala for Global Justice at Bayfront Park, which could be dubbed "Protest Central."
For general information about the protest efforts, local organizations to contact include South Florida Jobs for Justice (305-623-4900) and the Root Cause coalition (305-757-3880 or www.therootcause.org), or visit the Citizens Trade Campaign's calendar at www.citizenstrade.org/miamicalendar.php
SATURDAY NOVEMBER 15
Workshop: Working Women and the Global Economy - local, national and international
Several organizations will use the FTAA meetings in Miami to develop leadership of women from Miami and Latin America. This workshop will be a forum where women can share their experiences with trade, learn about trade and its impact on women, and learn how to influence the trade debates. Women who participate in the limited-enrollment workshop will receive training to speak with the media and as speakers during the actual meeting events. Workshop is noon to 5:00 p.m. at a location TBA. Contact sponsoring organizations STITCH (stitchonline.org), Unite for Dignity, and Women's Edge Coalition (www.womensedge.org). Call 202-265-3790, 305-623-3000, or 202-265 -3790.
SUNDAY NOVEMBER 16
Root Cause People's March
Hundreds of people from local organizations, together with allies from communities across the Americas, will embark on a 3-day, 34-mile march to downtown Miami, one mile for every country resisting the FTAA. The march wraps up on Tuesday with a huge rally/concert in Bayfront Park in downtown Miami. The march will highlight the impacts of free-trade policies on poor communities and communities of color throughout the Americas with protests, rallies, press conferences, concerts, teach-ins, and nightly workshops; it is sponsored by the Root Cause coalition, comprising three South Florida grassroots groups. The march starts at 9:30 a.m. on U.S. 1 in Fort Lauderdale. Contact www.therootcause.org or call 305-757-3880.
MONDAY NOVEMBER 17
Roadshow and teach-in: The Gapatistas - We'd Rather Wear Nothing Than Wear Gap
The roadshow making its way down the southern coast of the United States has its final stop in Miami Beach as the group called the Gapatistas will march to the Gap's entrance, then conduct a teach-in and strip for justice. The redwood forest is a primary cause for their efforts and they carry with them a stump of a 200-year-old tree for emphasis. The crowd assembles on the corner of Ocean Drive and Seventh Street at 2:00 p.m., then heads to the Gap at 673 Collins Ave. Call 415-731-7924 or visit www.gapsucks.org
TUESDAY NOVEMBER 18
Forum: Hemispheric Labor and Parliamentarian Forum
The forum will bring together trade unionists, parliamentarians, and civil society organizations to critique the proposed FTAA. It will be moderated by Linda Chavez-Thompson, executive vice president of the AFL-CIO (the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations) and president of the Inter-American Regional Organization of Workers, also known as ORIT in Spanish, which represents more than 45 million workers throughout the Western Hemisphere. The event runs from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Gusman Center for Performing Arts at 174 E. Flagler St. E-mail email@example.com or visit www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics/globaleconomy/ftaa_calendar.cfm
Rally and Press Conference: Health Before Trade - Tobacco Out of the FTAA!
Antitobacco organizations from around the country band together at noon to demonstrate the specific negative effects of trading tobacco for world health. There will be speakers and general solidarity-building with the goal of excluding tobacco from the scope of the FTAA. Meet at noon at the Freedom Torch, near Bayfront Park. Call 202-387-8030 or visit www.essentialaction.org/tobacco/event/ftaa/
Forum: Latino Communities and Free Trade
The forum will feature leaders and rank-and-file people from Latino organizations in the U.S. and from Latin America. It will focus on the impacts of free trade on Latino communities and Latin American countries, the different forms that resistance has taken, and alternatives for a fairer and more democratic hemispheric integration. The event is sponsored by South Florida Jobs with Justice and the Comité Latino Contra el ALCA. It runs from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Marriott Biscayne Bay, 1633 N. Bayshore Dr. Call 305-623-4900.
Forum: Steelworkers' Forum on Corporate Responsibility
Representatives and members of the United Steelworkers of America discuss why the FTAA is not a good thing. Speakers will begin at 2:00 p.m. at the Marriott Biscayne Bay, 1633 N. Bayshore Dr.
Meeting: Faith Groups Long-term Strategy Meeting
To be held at the Florida Center for Theological Studies at 111 NE First St., 7th floor. Call 305-379-3777.
Teach-in: Alternatives to Corporate Globalization - Voices from the Americas
"Sustainability and Democracy," Part 1
A series of teach-ins over the next few days will focus on alternative viewpoints to corporate takeovers and typical conceptions of democracy. Today's workshop is in four parts. In all, the teach-ins feature a series of workshops and plenaries focusing on the real impacts of corporate globalization on workers, farmers, indigenous people, women, human rights, democracy, and the environment. The opening plenary is 9:00-11:00 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd.
Concurrent session 1 is from 11:15 a.m. to 12: 45 p.m. in five places at the same time: "Trade Policy and the Crisis in Agriculture" at the First United Methodist Church at 400 Biscayne Blvd.; "Rights for Investors or Rights for Development" at the Doubletree, 1717 N. Bayshore Dr.; "Corporate Accountability, Global Finance, and the Environment" at the Doubletree; "Women's Experiences in the U.S. with Privatization and Free Trade" at the Holiday Inn, 200 SE Second Ave.; "Saving Our Water: The Fight for Control of the World's Water from Berkeley to Bolivia to Baghdad" at the Riande, 1825 Collins Ave., Miami Beach.
Concurrent session 2 is from 2:00 to 3:45 p.m. in five places: "FTAA, School of the Americas, and Militarism" at the Gesu Church, 118-170 NE Second St.; "SOA Watch: Corporate Globalization's Assault on the Environment" at the Doubletree; "Changing Course on Agriculture & Trade Policies" at the First United Methodist Church; "Roots of Corporate Power" at the Doubletree; and "Trade Law for Dummies" at the Holiday Inn.
The closing panel is 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. at the Gesu Church. Visit www.citizenstrade.org/miamicalendar.php for full schedule of speakers and themes.
Meeting: Continental Campaign Coordinating
A strategy meeting with representatives from different country-based campaigns in order to coordinate activities and mobilization events. The event is sponsored by the Continental Campaign Against the FTAA, run by the Hemispheric Social Alliance; it starts at 4:00 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd . Call 202-898-1566.
Documentary Film Festival
Seven documentary films from Latin America will be screened with commentaries from each country's point of view on globalization and free-trade issues, including Fatal Conspiracy from Venezuela. Other films come from Colombia, Mexico, Bolivia, and the U.S. The event is sponsored by ASOCOL (Asociacion de Solidaridad por Colombia), Bolivarian Circles, Asociación Campesina de la Florida, and the Comite Latino and runs from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at the Miami Light Project, 3000 Biscayne Blvd. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 305-623-4900.
Interfaith Service and Vigil: A Call for Peace through Justice and Understanding
Members of all faiths join in prayer, song, and reflection for the transformation of the systems of leadership and action that prevent the alleviation of poverty, justice for workers, democracy for citizens of the world, and stewardship for the earth. The goal of the meeting is to find peaceful solutions through open dialogue among all affected communities. The service will be followed by a candlelight vigil at the Torch of Friendship, with a prayer for transformation of the unjust structures that currently dominate our world. The event is sponsored by the First United Methodist Church of Miami and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Miami and runs from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd. Call 305-206-8332 or email email@example.com.
Celebration: Root Cause People's March Arrival
A rally and concert to be held in downtown Miami's Bayfront Park will gather all the marchers plus musical groups, spoken-word acts, and dancing groups, as well as the general public from 7:00 p.m. to midnight. Contact 305-757-3880 or www.therootcause.org
WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 19
Forum: Plan Colombia, Militarization and Trade Unionists (in Spanish)
Speakers from the ASOCOL (Asociacion de Solidaridad por Colombia) will address the political and military consequences Colombia may face if the FTAA goes into action. The event will be held at 260 NE 17th Terr. from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Public Hearing: The Impact of the FTAA on Public Health and Healthcare
The hearing is an opportunity for communities in the hemisphere to speak out about the impact of trade agreements and the FTAA on public health, healthcare, and water. Testimony will be presented to a public hearing tribunal, composed of respected leaders in the public health, medical, and labor communities from Latin America, North America, and the Caribbean. The event is sponsored by the Center for Policy Analysis on Trade and Health, Service Employees International Union, Public Services International, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Florida Alliance for Retired Americans, American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees, and Women's Edge Coalition and will be held from 9:30 a.m. to noon at Temple Israel, 137 NE 19th St. Contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 415-933-6204.
Forum: Negotiating Intellectual Property Provisions in Free Trade Agreements
Representatives address the critical issues on the table during the ministerial talks. Forum will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the University of Miami Storer Auditorium, 5250 University Dr., Coral Gables. The event is sponsored by the Washington College of Law, American University, the Consumer Project on Technology, and the Centro Interdisciplinario de Derecho Industrial y Económico (CEIDIE).
Forum: The Effects of Free Trade on Services and Agriculture in Latin America
The talk will be held at the Doubletree Hotel, 1717 N. Bayshore Dr., from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. It is sponsored by the Hemispheric Campaign on the FTAA and Latin American Division of Consumers International.
Rally: Take Back Public Education - No Privatization of School Services
The point of the rally is to address the negative effect the FTAA could have on American education, specifically regarding the school system being privatized at the local level. At the Miami-Dade County School Board building, thousands will gather to take a stand against privatizing key public services while denying decent jobs for working families. The event is sponsored by South Florida Jobs with Justice, AFSCME Local 1184, and United Teachers of Dade and starts at noon at 1450 NE 2nd Ave. Call 305-623-4900 or email email@example.com
THURSDAY NOVEMBER 20
Brunch: Unitarian Universalists FTAA Brunch
An event to welcome the UU Caravan to Miami, sing, pray, have a dialogue about where to go from here, and prepare for the march, with signs and banners. The brunch is sponsored by the Unitarian Universalists for a Just Economic Community and will be held from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. at the Miami UU Congregation, 7701 SW 76th Ave. Call 617-542-0634, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.uujec.net/
Forum: Trade in Services - the new threat to public services and service workers
This forum will bring together national and international speakers on the impact of new trade agreements on the service sector - including public services, postal services, and construction. The forum will also showcase outreach strategies and easily accessible materials for educating workers and the public about this issue. The event is to be held at the Doubletree Biscayne Bay, 1717 N. Bayshore Dr., from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and is sponsored by Public Services International, the Citizens Trade Campaign, and the Minnesota Fair Trade Coalition. Contact email@example.com or visit www.citizenstrade.org/pdf/ctc_services.pdf
Forum: Widening the Circle - Engaging Others About the FTAA
Talks will be held at First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd., from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.; sponsored by the First Unitarian Church of Portland, Oregon, and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Miami.
Forum: Retiree Breakfast Rally
Sponsored by AFL-CIO and Florida Alliance for Retired Americans, the event will take place from 10:00 a.m. to noon at the Marriott Biscayne Bay, 1633 N. Bayshore Dr. Visit www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics/globaleconomy/ftaa_calendar.cfm
Coalition March and Rally: For Global Justice
The main rally and march of the mobilization will bring a diverse lineup of speakers to voice their opposition to the FTAA and to propose alternatives to neoliberal trade policies. The march will kick off with a rally at Bayfront Park Amphitheater, then travel through downtown Miami, past the official meetings, and return to the amphitheater for a finale with musical entertainment. The march will incorporate a symbolic delivery of ballots outside the trade ministers' meetings and will be peaceful. The march is sponsored by a broad coalition of organizations from around the country, as well as Latin America and the Caribbean, and will start at noon at Bayfront Park. There will be a welcoming rally and celebration at the end of the march from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Bayfront Park Amphitheater, Biscayne Boulevard and NW First. Call 202-637-5000 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
March: Our Media Are Not for Sale!
Media activists from around the world gather for a march to defend free speech, cultural diversity, and media democracy from "free trade." Meet outside First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd., under banner "Our Media Are Not for Sale!" The march is sponsored by the Free Press Media Reform Network, CRIS Communication Rights Campaign, OURMedia/NUESTR@SMedios, and Prometheus Radio Project and runs from noon to 4:00 p.m. Call 607-351-0585, e-mail email@example.com, or visit www.mediareform.net/ftaa, www.crisinfo.org, and www.ourmedianet.org
Debate: NAFTA at 10 - a debate on NAFTA's ten-year record
FRIDAY NOVEMBER 21
Teach-in: Alternatives to Corporate Globalization - Voices from the Americas
"Faces of the Global Economy," Part 3
The series discusses alternative viewpoints to corporate takeovers and typical conceptions of democracy. The teach-ins feature a series of workshops and plenaries focusing on the real impacts of corporate globalization on workers, farmers, indigenous people, women, human rights, democracy, and the environment. Today's sessions highlight specific effects the FTAA will have on groups in various countries of the hemisphere, with representatives of the grassroots groups on hand to add depth to the discussions. The workshops are in four concurrent sessions over the course of the day. The opening session takes place from 9:00 to 10:45 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd.
Concurrent session 1 takes place in eight places at the same time: "Alternatives vs. the FTAA" at the Doubletree, 1717 N. Bayshore Dr.; "Lessons from Mexico: Environmental and Social Impacts of NAFTA in a Developing Country" at the Doubletree; "Speak Out! Stop the Corporate Takeover of Water!" at the First United Methodist Church, 400 Biscayne Blvd.; "Trade and the Poor: Case Studies on the Effects of Trade Liberalization in Mexico and Jamaica" at the Peace Education Foundation, 1900 Biscayne Blvd.; "The Impacts of Export Credit Agencies in Latin America: Campaigns and Case Studies" at the Doubletree; "FTAA and Its Corporate Pushers" at the Doubletree; "Puppet Show from Argentina" at the Riande Hotel, 1825 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; "Beyond the Miami Ministerial -- local and statewide strategies for multi-sectoral organizing" at the Doubletree.
Concurrent session 2 takes place in eight places, from 2:00 to 3:35 p.m. "Lessons from NAFTA: No Model for the Hemisphere" at the First United Methodist Church; "Trade and Migration" at the Doubletree; "Trade in the Americas: the FTAA Debate from a Woman's Perspective" at the Riande; "Student Organizing and the FTAA" at the Gesu Church, 118-170 NE Second St.; "Lessons from Bilateral Free Trade Agreements" at the Doubletree; "Winning Strategies: Defending Water as a Public Good and a Human Right" at the Peace Education Foundation; "Where Do We Go From Here? The Corporate Empire's Next Stop: April, 2004 -- IMF/World Bank's 60th Anniversary in Washington, D.C." at the Doubletree; "Faces of Migration in the Global Economy" at the Doubletree.
Concurrent session 3 takes place from 4:00 to 5:45 p.m. in seven places: "Challenge to Democracy: NAFTA Investor-State Cases" at the Doubletree; "Case Studies on Water and Gender in the Americas" at the Doubletree; "The FTAA and Indigenous Peoples: Impacts and Alternatives" at the Gesu Church; "Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign" at the Holiday Inn; "Derailing the Plan Puebla Panama and Free Trade Agenda" at the Peace Education Foundation; "Labor and Gender" at the Doubletree; and "Challenge from the South: FTAA Campaigns in Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela" at the Riande. Visit www.citizenstrade.org/miamicalendar.php for full schedule of speakers and themes.
Workshop: Corporate Globalization: Trading Away Our Right to Protect Animals
This is a workshop about how global trade agreements and institutions such as GATT, NAFTA, and the World Trade Organization (WTO) have affected animals. Dr. Michael Greger will offer his understanding of what impact the proposed FTAA will have on animals as well. The event is sponsored by the Boston Ecofeminist Action, time and location TBA. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Conference: Globalization and the African World
The Globalization in the African World Conference will include a series of keynote speakers, workshops, and roundtables on globalization in Africa and the diaspora. International, national, and local leaders will address issues such as the FTAA, HIV/AIDS, sweatshop labor, Haiti's economic growth, Caricom and the single-market economy, and the war on terror's impact upon the African world. Sponsored by the Africa Action, African New World Studies Program at Florida International University, Black Radical Congress, Center for Constitutional Rights, Haitian Women of Miami, Institute of the Black World, Jobs with Justice, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Miami Workers' Center, Power U Center for Social Change, Project South, Public Citizen, the local NAACP, TransAfrica Forum, 10th Dept. Organization for Haitian Empowerment, and the Citizens Trade Campaign. The conference takes place from 3:00 to 6:45 p.m. at the University of Miami's Storer Auditorium, 5250 University Dr., Coral Gables. Contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.