Latin American Working Group (LAWG) fonds
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- Textual record
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[ca. 1964]-1994 (Creation)
- Latin American Working Group
ca. 7.1 m of textual records and other material
ca. 203 audio cassettes
ca. 24 audio reels
ca. 13 video cassettes
ca. 4800 slides
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The Latin American Working Group (LAWG) was an independent, grassroots organization in Toronto, Canada, which carried out Canadian-Latin American solidarity activities from 1966-1997. Formed in response to the military coup and invasion of the Dominican Republic by the United States of America in 1965, LAWG's mission was to educate Canadians, develop solidarity links between Canadians and the peoples of Latin America, and advocate for an independent Canadian foreign policy. LAWG carried out activist research regarding the roles played by Canadian corporations and government aid policies in Latin America by working closely with union, churches, non-governmental organizations and academics in the North and the South hemispheres committed to human rights and social justice. It contributed to the creation and work of the Taskforce on Churches and Corporate Responsibility, the Inter-Church Committee on Human Rights in Latin America (ICCHRLA), the Central American Policy Alternatives (CAPA), the Roundtable for Peace, Mission for Peace, Canada-Chile Solidarity, Tools for Peace, Linking Ontario and Central American in Labour Solidarity (LOCALS), Common Frontiers, and other initiatives aimed at changing Canadian foreign policy. LAWG worked with several Canadian trade union humanity and social justice funds to facilitate north-south educational tours involving workers, teachers, Christians, health workers, and those from other sectors, as a way of deepening Canadians' understanding of, and mutual solidarity with, others living in this hemisphere. LAWG worked to provide insights into the reality of Latin America that it felt was not being provided by either the Canadian government nor mainstream media. Its first-hand information and primary research was published in its newsletter "the LAWG letter," "the Central America update," "LAWG labour report," and several books critically examining the role of Canadian corporations such as Falconbridge and INCO in Latin America. Over its 30 year existence, LAWG played a significant role in influencing Canadian public opinion, and that of churches, trade unions, and government policy-makers in relationship to Latin America. There is no connection between this group and the group with the same name in the United States.
Scope and content
The fonds consists of meeting minutes, quarterly and annual reports, financial records, fundraising files, correspondence files (including with social activists in Canada and in other countries), documentation of advocacy work (including with trade unions, churches and religious groups, and other non-government organizations (NGOs)), oral histories and interviews, newsletters, slide presentations, press releases, brochures, research material such as news clippings and reports (including research on Canadian corporations), publications and reference library materials related to the activities of the Latin American Working Group.
Immediate source of acquisition
Deposited by LAWG in 2004 and donated in 2005.
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Access is open.
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Generated finding aid
See also the records of the Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean (CERLAC), (F38).
The RCMP files relating to LAWG have been transferred to Library and Archives Canada.
The fonds comprises the following accessions: 2004-016. No further accruals are expected.
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2004/08/10 Sean Smith. Created.
2012/06/27 S. Dubeau. Added authorized provenance and subject access points; immediate source of acquisition; biographical sketch.
2012/06/27 A. St. Onge. Updated biographic sketch based on article from former member available at http://www.africafiles.org/article.asp?ID=4636. Added statement about access restrictions.
2015/08/12 S. Dubeau. Corrected creation dates and added extent info.
2015/09/17 S. Dubeau. Finalized description.
2019/06/13 KCP. Migrated from EES. Uploaded legacy file inventory as a PDF document.
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