UNIT/PITT Society for Art and Critical Awareness is a charitable non-profit artist-run organization that supports art and critical awareness by offering the tools, space, resources, and mentorship for emerging artists and members of our neighbouring Chinatown and Downtown Eastside communities to engage in experimental creative work that advances a more expansive, inclusive reality for art and cultural production.
In Canada and internationally, we support Indigenous sovereignty and the right to self-determination for all Indigenous peoples. Additionally, we support the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) into law, and not just as a symbolic framework.
As an organization, our namesake stands for and supports ‘critical awareness’: we understand it as a necessary reminder in this moment to stand up and condemn violent colonial acts and crimes against humanity. Therefore, we call upon ourselves to use this moment to examine what it means to be critically aware, and support and inspire our community to stand in solidarity against injustices.
UNIT/PITT supports the actions of Indigenous land defenders at Fairy Creek, Caycuse, and across the province. We are absolutely disgusted by and vehemently condemn the RCMP, municipal police departments, surveillance and security companies, and politicians that are complicit in what appears to be constant, unlawful human rights violations against land defenders and Indigenous communities.
UNIT/PITT also stands in solidarity with Palestine, recognizing that the violence inflicted by Israeli forces is, in fact, a demonstration of colonial dominance. Additionally, we condemn the anti-semitism that has spiked around the world as a result of the actions of the Israeli state.
We want to encourage a more compassionate and holistic criticism of what we can do to support Indigenous sovereignty, including the freedom of Palestinian peoples. As a non-profit artist-run organization largely funded through government grants, we are critical of the ways in which the Canadian government perpetuates cycles of colonial violence; notably, surveillance and policing tactics against Indigenous peoples in Canada, and the legitimization of a fellow settler state, Israel, by means of the Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement and the Canada-Israel Strategic Partnership.
Visit our post on Instagram for a non-exhaustive list of suggested social media accounts to follow for updates on Palestine, and actions that support Indigenous sovereignty across the province.