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Music, speeches, and a crowdsourced Jumbotron greet Trade Minister Freeland with one clear message: Don’t lock us into the TPP!

Mounting opposition to TPP reflected outside and inside today’s government-hosted Town Hall at the University of Toronto

June 15, 2016There was no mistaking the mounting opposition to the TPP at today’s Town Hall, hosted by Global Affairs Canada at the University of Toronto. A Community Festival featuring music, speeches, games, and art greeted Town Hall attendees, including Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland. Also on the scene was a large crowdsourced Jumbotron, beaming images, memes, and short videos submitted by Canadians from across the country.

High-resolution images from today’s TPP Community Festival & Town Hall are available here.

The reel broadcast by our crowdsourced Jumbotron is available here.

“The TPP isn’t a deal about trade.  Even right-wing economists whose job it is to tell us how good free trade is can’t make a strong case for ratifying the TPP,” said Unifor Director of Telecommunications and Toronto Area Director, Naureen Rizvi.  Adding, “Nothing in the TPP will help to build a more sustainable Canada, a just society or good jobs – this is not a new approach and it is not what we all need.”

“Ordinary people are the big losers when it comes to the TPP. We lose our government’s ability to protect our common interests. We lose our jobs,” says Sujata Dey, Trade Campaigner with the Council of Canadians. “A study by Tufts University shows that Canada could lose 58,000 jobs because of the TPP. Why can’t we have a deal that creates economic opportunity for everyone, not just corporations?”

“The more people learn about the TPP, the less they like it,” said David Christopher, communications manager with OpenMedia. “Opposition to this unfair and undemocratic deal is mounting right across the country, and it’s great to see that reflected in the scenes outside and inside today’s Town Hall. Now we need to keep up the pressure to ensure Minister Freeland can’t ignore the voices of everyday Canadians.”

Speakers at the Town Hall included Unifor National President Jerry Dias, along with Professor Michael Geist, and Dan Schwanen from the C.D. Howe Institute. A wide range of groups including Council of Canadians, Leadnow, OpenMedia, Sum of Us, and Unifor are working together to amplify Canadians’ voices on the TPP.

To date, over 19,500 Canadians have sent detailed feedback on the TPP to the government and the Parliamentary Trade Committee using the online tools at and

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