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Activism Guide

    April 29, 2021

    There are countless opportunities to get involved with Amnesty International. This guide is your resource for the latest campaigns and actions. 

    Learn about upcomng events and new actions you can take to get involved. 

    April 26, 2021

    Perhaps the greatest cross border priority we all face is protecting the environment on which our human rights and shared future depends. 

    Environment defenders in Latin America risk their very lives to respond to this challenge with hope and enormous courage. Indeed, Latin America is the most dangerous region in the world to defend human rights and the environment.

    Most at risk are Indigenous, black and rural campesino defenders, especially when they confront people intent on taking control of their land to exploit its economic potential or the natural resources found there, no matter the cost. Women environment defenders face the added risk of sexual violence against them or their children because their outspoken efforts challenge traditional gender roles as well as economic interests.

    Amnesty International Canada is responding to appeals for solidarity from environment defenders in Latin America who know their governments often pay more attention to their international image than the voices of their citizens.

    April 25, 2021

    The Government of Canada must do more to prevent human rights abuses by Canadian companies operating overseas.

    In 2019, Canada created the Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise, but failed to give the ombudsperson the powers needed to conduct effective investigations into human rights abuses involving Canadian companies. Amnesty continues to press the government to give the Ombudsperson the power to compel documents and testimony. 

    April 24, 2021

    Every year, thousands of people are detained by Canada for reasons connected to their immigration status. Sometimes they are held in detention centers, and sometimes they are held in provincial jails. Under Canadian law, people in immigration detention risk being held indefinitely, and many have spent years of their lives waiting to be free.

    In June, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch will release a joint report on the topic of immigration detention in Canada, which will be followed by a campaign intended to bring about meaningful change to this harmful practice.

    Watch this space for more details on the campaign, and how you can get involved!

    April 23, 2021

    Learn more and take action in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and two-spirit (LGBTQ2S) rights while practicing social distancing.

    The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted LGBTI people. People have been forced into lockdown with homophobic and transphobic family members. Some governments have used the pandemic as an excuse to crackdown on a whole range of human rights, including LGBTI rights. LGBTI human rights defenders are at a heightened risk of persecution. Connecting in person with chosen family, communities of care, and other supports has often been impossible. And now, the pandemic is forcing Pride activities online for the second straight year. The need for virtual communities of care and solidarity, and global activism in support of LGBTI rights has never been greater! Join us during Pride season to take action in support of LGBTI rights!

    April 22, 2021

    Climate change is one of the greatest human rights challenges of our time. Here are four ways you can take action for climate justice this spring:

    April 22, 2021
      New: #StandWithBelarus on Social Media

    Since the widely disputed presidential election in August 2020, the Belarusian regime has engaged in a brutal crackdown on all forms of dissent, real or imaginary.

    Last fall, a global petition against police brutality which saw 191,000 people from 144 countries and territories call for an end to police violence in Belarus. The visibility of that international action meant a great deal to people on the ground in Belarus struggling to defend human rights.

    WHAT YOU CAN DO:

    April 21, 2021
    From Amnesty's Powering Change Comic, two characters stand in front of electric bus while one removes her bike from the front bike rack
    Recharge for Rights this Earth Day: Time for Canada to take a climate justice approach to transportation

    Guest blog by Eric Doherty, member of AI Canada’s Corporate Accountability and Climate Justice specialized team on Energy Transition. To join, please send an email to Elena: edumitru@amnesty.ca and indicate your interest in the Energy Transition team. 

    Last month the U.S. Department of Transportation put a Texas highway expansion project on hold, because it could violate U.S. human rights law by increasing pollution and displacing people from their homes in lower income Black and Latino neighbourhoods. And, after some intense campaigning by climate justice organizations like the Sunrise Movement, under the Biden administration, U.S. transportation spending is finally being shifted away from highway expansion and toward public transit.

    April 20, 2021

    DOWNLOAD THE CAMPAIGN GUIDE

    The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls finished its work a year and a half ago, and the issue has largely faded from news headlines during the pandemic. But this human rights crisis has not gone away. In fact, according to a survey conducted last Spring by the Native Women’s Association of Canada, violence against Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit people has increased during the pandemic.

    The federal government has still not issued a formal response to the National Inquiry’s Final Report. The much-anticipated National Action Plan to implement the National Inquiry’s 231 Calls for Justice, which was set to be released in June 2020, was delayed because of the pandemic. The government has stated that the plan is under development, but the timeline remains unknown.

    March 31, 2021
      “We want to raise awareness about the importance of our land, water, trees and all the animals that live there … We are threatened and persecuted for protecting something that benefits all humanity…But we won’t give up.” 

    These are the words that Jani Silva, a courageous woman environment defender in the Amazon region of Colombia, shared at Amnesty Canada’s Sparking Connections online conference in November (watch a video of what Jani said at the conference on our YouTube channel here). Not long after we talked with her, Jani had to flee her home and go into hiding because of dangerous new threats that put her life in danger and reduced state protection. 

    During December’s Write for Rights campaign, more than 9,000 Amnesty Canada supporters raised their voices to demand strengthened, not reduced, protection for Jani and other threatened defenders of her organization, ADISPA.

    February 28, 2021

    March 2nd marks 5 years since the assassination of beloved indigenous rights and river defender Berta Cáceres in Honduras.

    The inspiring Lenca leader was internationally recognized for her determined efforts to stop construction of a dam on the Gualcarque River that Indigenous communities opposed for violating their rights. Berta was awarded the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize, known as the ‘Green Nobel’, for her leadership of this struggle. To learn more, watch a 5-minute video about why Berta was awarded the prize and listen to Berta's inspiring words at the acceptance ceremony.

    The anniversary is an important moment to make visible international support for the courageous defenders who risk their lives to continue the vital human rights work for which Berta was killed.

    February 27, 2021

    As we came together to mark International Women’s Day last year, we had no idea that the world was about to shut down and that hard-won women’s rights were about to be put to the test during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Over the past year, because of the pandemic, we have seen the number of women experiencing gender-based violence go up, the hours women dedicate to unpaid care work skyrocket, threats faced by women human rights defenders increase, marginalized groups including sex workers become further marginalized, access to sexual and reproductive health services decrease, and the number of women in the paid labour force plummet.

    But we have also seen activists come together to demand that governments address the violence, ensure access to sexual and reproductive health services, protect activists, advocate for the rights of sex workers, and demand access to affordable and high-quality childcare.

    February 26, 2021

    Mark your calendars for action in March on behalf of unjustly imprisoned indigenous river defender Bernardo Caal Xol and other water defenders under attack.

    WHEN 

    International Day of Action for Rivers on March 14 is a celebrated around the world as a day for solidarity action with communities defending access to the water of clean, flowing rivers. World Water Day, which is celebrated each year on March 22, will focus this year on the value of water for all of us, especially amid the climate crisis. 

    WHAT

    On and around these key dates, we are organizing Days of Action in solidarity with unjustly imprisoned indigenous river defender Bernardo Caal Xol in Guatemala and other threatened water defenders.

    January 14, 2021

    What’s this all about?

    Anti-Black racism is prejudice, attitudes, beliefs, stereotyping and discrimination that is directed at people of African descent and is rooted in their unique history and experience of enslavement and its legacy. Anti-Black racism is deeply entrenched in Canadian institutions, policies and practices, to the extent that anti-Black racism is either functionally normalized or rendered invisible to the larger White society. Anti-Black racism is manifest in the current social, economic, and political marginalization of African Canadians, which includes unequal opportunities, lower socio-economic status, higher unemployment, significant poverty rates and overrepresentation in the criminal justice system. [source: https://www.ontario.ca/document/data-standards-identification-and-monitoring-systemic-racism/glossary]

    Communities have been speaking out for decades about how Black people experience policing in Canada. It’s time to listen: racism is not up for debate – it’s systemic.

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