Ann Hansen is a Canadian anarchist, born in Ontario in 1953. Her early interest in anti-authoritarian activities led her to Europe, where she studied urban guerrilla groups as a part of the University of Waterloo’s Integrated Studies department. Upon her return to Canada, she became active with the prison-abolition movement, including the production of Bulldozer magazine.
In the early 1980s, Hansen formed the guerrilla organization, Direct Action (later also known as the Vancouver Five or the Squamish Five), in Vancouver with Julia Belmas, Gerry Hannah, Doug Stewart, and Brent Taylor. Direct Action’s major activities occurred in 1982; the bombing of the Cheekey-Dunsmuir BC Hydro substation on Vancouver Island in May, and the bombing of the Litton Industries factory in Toronto in October. Direct Action also participated in the collective Wimmin’s Fire Brigade firebombing actions against the Red Hot Video pornographic video store outlets in BC. The group were arrested in January 1983 on the highway near Squamish, BC; “Free the Five” rallies were organized in their support and to raise awareness of alleged biased media reporting concerning the trial. Direct Action members were sentenced to life in prison in June 1984; all members have completed their sentences and have been released. Hansen has since published Direct Action: Memoires of An Urban Guerrilla (Between the Lines Press, 2001), and co-authored, with Julie Belmas, This Is not A Love Story: Armed Struggle Against the Institutions of Patriarchy (2002; available for download from http://TheAnarchistLibrary.org).