The MPCC is a membership-based, non-partisan organization, which strives to encourage and help create grassroots democracy and collective autonomy.
The Citizens’ Committee was founded in 1968 as part of a struggle against the demolition of the Milton-Parc neighbourhood. Throughout the 50s and 60s, 96% of the Milton-Parc neighbourhood was bought out by the developper, Concordia Ltd., a corporation which planned to demolish the neighbourhood, evict its working-class tenants, and build up luxury highrises. Through grassroots mobilization, the Milton-Parc Citizens’ Committee organized protests and occupations. Tenants who were evicted so that their homes could be demolished would break back into their homes and re-occupy them as an act of protest. A sit-in at Concordia Ltd’s offices resulted in the arrest of 56 residents and their supporters. Eventually, the movement succeeded in forcing the company’s hand. Tenants were sold back their apartment buildings. Rather than reconverting these buildings into “private property,” further and intensive mobilization resulted in the establishment of co-operative housing in the homes previously destined for demolition. Close to 1,500 people now live in the non-profits and co-ops that resulted from this period.
Today, the Citizens’ Committee runs two collective gardens, a food bank, a community library, and a three-storey building. We are involved in countinuous community organizing. Our mobilizations include the fight against the privatization of massive land plots occupied by decommissioned hospitals. We are struggling for the re-purposing of these sites as community spaces, meeting community needs (particularly housing needs), stewarded by traditional indigenous leadership. We are close allies with, and supporters of, other neighbourhood groups such as the Montreal Autonomous Tenants’ Union, Montreal Solidarity Supply, and the Indigenous Street Worker Project.