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SFU Labour Studies Program Statement Against Genocide in Palestine

October 20, 2023

The undersigned members of the Labour Studies Program at SFU stand with our colleagues and comrades in Gaza and Palestine, and those in the international labour movement demanding an immediate end to the genocide in the Gaza strip and the ethnic cleansing in Gaza and the West Bank. We demand an end to decades-long Israeli apartheid and to Canada’s half century of support of, and military and economic aid for, the settler colonial Zionist project of Palestinian elimination enabled by Western states.

Our collective grief and horror at Hamas’s killing and kidnapping of Israelis does not justify the collective punishment of 2.3 million Palestinians in Gaza. Our governments and institutions cannot condemn the Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure in Ukraine while giving Israel unqualified support to cut off access to water, electricity, food, and medicine to the people of Gaza while bombing their homes, schools and hospitals. We cannot stand by while the language of “human animals” is used by the Israeli state and uncritically amplified in the media to, in the words of the Palestinian Youth Movement, “render us savage and killable”. 

We stand with the Palestinian people. We stand with Israelis and Jews demanding “not in our name”.  We stand against antisemitism, which cannot be conflated with criticism of the Israeli state. We stand with working people, academics, scholars, and activists being harassed and criminalized for their support of Palestinian liberation. We see how the weight of harassment and criminalization is borne unequally by our Palestinian, Indigenous, Muslim, Black and racialized colleagues.   

An injury to one is an injury to all.

Kendra Strauss, Director, The Labour Studies Program and SFU Morgan Centre for Labour Research

Enda Brophy, Associate Professor and Graduate Chair, School of Communication

Malcolm Steinberg, Associate Professor and Director Public Health Programs, Faculty Health Sciences

Evelyn Encalada Grez, Assistant Professor, Labour Studies-Sociology & Anthropology

Yi Chien Jade Ho, Instructor, The Labour Studies Program

John-Henry Harter, Lecturer, The Labour Studies Program and the Department of History

Sherry Breshears, Instructor, The Labour Studies Program

Sonya Sabet-Rasekh, Instructor, The Labour Studies Program