Mohamed will discuss the work of the Street Vendor Project and the process and problematics of organizing street vendors in New York, most of whom are immigrants from the global south. The SVP provides legal and small business services to vendors while organizing them to amplify their voices in order to increase their collective power in New York. It is structured democratically, with a leadership board of experienced vendors, elected each year by the general membership. Most of its primary activities flow from vendors status as immigrants and provides them with training on navigating the bureaucratic apparatus rules that regulate their daily reality on the street. The work of the SVP exposes forms of alienation and the processes of negotiating access to minimal economic security as people shift from the global south into cities like New York.
The SVP is involved in a joint comparative project that includes the Culinaria Research Centre at UTSC and colleagues at the National University of Singapore, NYU, and Delhi University that works to understand the contextualized histories and politics of street vending across cities.
This public talk is co-sponsored by Culinaria Research Centre and the Centre for Critical Development Studies.