Winnipeg Free Press – Two-and-a-half million dollars down, another $36.5 million to go.
The Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights just received $2.5 million to help build the museum that’s under construction at The Forks.
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CanWest – A gay rights group on Friday criticized Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty’s decision to shelve a retooling of the province’s sexual education curriculum.
Egale Canada’s executive director, Helen Kennedy, said McGuinty’s reversal on the policy, which would have introduced discussions on sexuality in Grade 3 and anal intercourse in Grade 7, was “very disappointing,” adding that “kids with same sex partners are being left out again.”
CNW – Harper Government Steps Up Attacks against Women’s Human Rights
In recent weeks, the following organizations have been denied funding by Status of Women Canada (SWC): the New Brunswick Coalition for Pay Equity, le Conseil d’intervention pour l’accès des femmes au travail (CIAFT), the Ontario Association of Interval and Transition Houses, Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW), Réseau des tables régionales de groupes de femmes du Québec, the Centre for Equality Rights in Accommodation, Action travail des femmes.
Several other key organizations have been denied SWC funding in the last few years, such as the Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women, Womenspace, the Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada, the Alberta Network of Immigration Women, Centre de documentation sur l’éducation des adultes et la condition feminine, Association féminine d’éducation et d’action sociale (AFEAS.)
Xtra – As Xtra previously reported, Richard filed a complaint with the Canadian Human Rights Commission in 2005. He alleges discrimination based on sexual orientation by his former employer, the Treasury Board of Canada.
Richard, the Canadian government, the CHRC and the Attorney General are entangled in legal proceedings over whether Richard’s allegations of systemic homophobia — which was filed two decades after the events in question — should still be heard in court.
Edmonton Journal – Dismayed and angry members of the transgendered community are preparing to launch a human rights complaint after the province delisted sex-change surgery from its funding coverage.
“It’s a matter of life and death,” said Jamie-Lynn Garvin, a 47-year-old who has been living as a woman for the last two years and was on a waiting list for a sex-change operation (although her funding hadn’t yet been approved).
ACC – Keep an open mind when determining which relationships are covered by family status protection. For example, the Ontario Human Rights Code defines family status as “the status of being in a parent and child relationship.” This definition however, has been liberally interpreted by both courts and tribunals to include most parent and child “type” relationships including non-biological parent and child relationships and non-biological gay and lesbian parents. The Ontario Human Rights Commission has also taken the position that family status protection extends to individuals providing eldercare to aging parents. Given the aging population, employers should prepare for family status accommodation requests from employees who are looking after older parents with special needs.
Health Zone – Aid experts alarmed by Canada’s new anti-abortion stand in foreign policy have received some raw political advice from a Conservative senator: “shut the f— up” or it could get worse.
“We’ve got five weeks or whatever left until G-8 starts. Shut the f— up on this issue,” Conservative Senator Nancy Ruth told a group of international-development advocates who gathered on Parliament Hill on Monday to sound the alarm about Canada’s hard-right stand against abortion in foreign aid.
Telegraph – “Banning corporal punishment is the model that the Council of Europe would like countries to follow. You can call it ’pressure’ if you like, but we are not about to shove anything down your throats. It is a matter of time and understanding, and we think that time will prove that we are on the right side of the debate on whether to ban corporal punishment of children.”
Toronto Sun – She is helping friend, Ray Nemard, 40, in his bid to obtain an apology from the commission after he was allegedly called a “f****** monkey,” by an operator at Coxwell subway station in 2004.
A complaint was filed to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, which is hearing his case.
“I am not happy by what I heard today,” Nemard said after the meeting. “The operator who did this to me is still on the job even though we know he has 16 complaints against him.”
He takes “pills and other medication” to help him cope with the slur, which he said led to a loss of his job as a chef.
Toronto Star – Hate speech and the Canadian Human Rights Commission: B
Any restriction on speech has to have a clear social benefit, and so we recognize the Canadian Human Rights Commission for its decision in the Lemire case to deem the hate speech provision of the Canadian Human Rights Code to be unconstitutional.
Examiner – Don’t expect Commissioner Lynch to bring about change to way the system works, at least not in anyway that protects and respects the fundamental freedoms Canadians cherish such as free expression…
Asking Ms. Lynch this week about changing well documented problem behaviours in the CHRC, she tried to tell me that they are rated as one of the best places to work by civil servants and that they are continually improving.
“We are proud of how we accomplish our work,” says Lynch. I just wish the rest of us could say the same.
Vancouver Sun – The rules that allowed a Vancouver Catholic high school to sideline a lesbian teacher after her lifestyle became an issue have been in place for decades across the country and have been upheld by Canada’s highest court.
But labour and employment lawyers said Thursday it may be time for the Supreme Court of Canada to revisit the issue of how religious rights and freedoms can in some cases trump individual human rights.
National Post – “Iran wins a seat on UN Commission on the Status of Women.”
But this is no laughing matter. The country that sees women as second-class citizens and stones adulteresses to death has won a place by default on the world body’s commission charged with improving the lot of women around the world.
Globe and Mail – What issues are you going to be raising?
We’re thrilled the Canadian government has decided to focus on maternal and child health for the G8. But the fact is that they’ve been backsliding. This is a government that hasn’t taken gender equality and women’s rights issues very seriously in terms of our foreign aid. The Canadian government used to give a lot of funding directly to women’s organizations, but we’ve been shrinking that funding over the years.
Edmonton Journal – The Alberta government again appears to be making health-care decisions based not on true cost savings, but on what it thinks taxpayers will make the least noise about. How else to explain the continuing determination to end funding for sex-change operations?…
In the case of the relatively few Albertans seeking sex-reassignment surgery each year, they would be required to pay for a procedure that costs between $18,000 and $70,000 — an amount that can be financially devastating, to say nothing of the emotional and psychological devastation that would result from being unable to afford it.
Fox – Without fanfare, the United Nations this week elected Iran to its Commission on the Status of Women, handing a four-year seat on the influential human rights body to a theocratic state in which stoning is enshrined in law and lashings are required for women judged “immodest.”
Vancouver Sun – Albertans who have already had voluntary mastectomies or have started hormone therapy that has irreversibly led them to change sexes will be eligible to have their transgender surgery paid for by the province if they apply by July 31.
Funding for up to 20 people will remain in place for the sex-change surgeries until 2014-15, when the cash will dry up from Alberta Health and Wellness.
Metro - Canadian employers have historically taken an ignorant view of human rights tribunals and their often extraordinary decisions. But that may be quickly changing.
Sweeping changes to human rights legislation and left-leaning adjudicators directed to interpret remedial legislation — such as human rights laws — in a broad and inclusive manner, should leave employers very concerned. Here are some of the reasons why…
Times-Colonist – The University of Victoria’s efforts to evict a student who has lived in on-campus housing since 1991 could be heading back to B.C. Supreme Court.
Alkis Gerd’son claims UVic is violating his human rights because he has a mental disability. In 2004, the province designated Gerd’son as disabled, allowing him to collect monthly support, including a housing allowance and other benefits. His complaint goes before a B.C. Human Rights tribunal in June.
Gerd’son earned a bachelor’s degree in 1997 and has not completed classes since. The university has been trying to evict him since 1998.
Times-Colonist – It seems increasingly likely that a dispute between the parents of a Nanaimo bantam girls hockey team and the Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association will go before the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal later this year.
Parents recently cancelled a settlement meeting to try to resolve the dispute, first made public last fall.
A complaint filed on behalf of the Bantam A female hockey team claimed “gender-based” discrimination after a competitive hockey program for teenage girls for the 2009-10 season was cancelled.
The NMHA informed parents the female Bantam A competitive program, which had been running for four years, would be cancelled due to a lack of players.
StarPhoenix - There are good reasons why the Court of Queen’s Bench is not a good replacement option for the human rights tribunal.
Three comprehensive reviews of provincial human rights systems have said just that, for reasons of access to justice, expertise in human rights, and representativeness of different sections of the community. The Ontario Human Rights Code review task force, Achieving Equality: A Report on Human Rights Reform, 1992; B.C. Human Rights Review: Report on Human Rights in British Columbia, 1994; and the report of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission, Renewing the Vision: Human Rights in Saskatchewan, 1996.
Bangor Daily News – The Maine Human Rights Commission worked on but has not yet issued recommendations on how public schools accommodate transgender students. What should be the policy? Should boys who identify as girls be able to use the girls bathroom and locker room and participate on girls sports teams?
Remember That Time You Told Gus That He Couldn’t Take The Weekend Off To Fly To Vegas? You Were Committing A Crime Against Humanity
National Post – The European Union has declared travelling a human right, and is launching a scheme to subsidize vacations with taxpayers’ dollars for those too poor to afford their own trips.
Antonio Tajani, the European Union commissioner for enterprise and industry, proposed a strategy that could cost European taxpayers hundreds of millions of euros a year, The Times of London reports.
“Travelling for tourism today is a right. The way we spend our holidays is a formidable indicator of our quality of life,” Mr. Tajani told a group of ministers at The European Tourism Stakeholders Conference in Madrid on April 15.
The Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC) announced plans last month to close its regional offices in Toronto, Vancouver, and Halifax, a move some critics are calling an attack on the human rights system…
Taylor says the closure of the offices will actually deliver better service, because the CHRC is “taking management positions and turning them into front-line positions.”
Annual Report 07/08 – Concerning the monetary claims, after looking at the constituent elements of the harassment experienced by the complainant, the Panel awarded $50,000 in general damages. On the claim for loss of income…the Panel awarded the sum of $425,058.00 for loss of income during the years 1997-2006.