Select this search icon to access the amnesty.ca search form

Main menu

Facebook Share

Canada

    April 17, 2020

    OTTAWA – Amnesty International is pleased to announce the winners of the 25th annual Amnesty International Canada Media Awards:

    Long-Form Audio: Justin Ling, Jennifer Fowler, Erin Byrnes and Cesil Fernandes, CBC Podcasts, Uncover: The Village

    Mixed Media: Jillian Kestler-D’Amours and Megan O’Toole, Al Jazeera (freelance), Nations Divided: Mapping Canada's Pipeline Battle

    Long-Form Text: Shree Paradkar, Toronto Star, These Girls Were Powerless, Living On The Edge Of Society, But One School Is Turning Them Into Heroes, Feminists, And Resisters

    April 15, 2020

    OTTAWA – A total of 301 organizations, academics and former politicians from across the country are calling on all levels of government in Canada to take urgent steps to strengthen human rights oversight amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

    A total of 157 organizations and 144 individuals – including Indigenous organizations, civil society groups, unions, academics and former politicians– are urging federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments to adopt robust oversight measures to strengthen human rights protection and guard against potential human rights violations during the current public health crisis.

    April 15, 2020

    During the extreme challenges caused by the current threat of the coronavirus, our Nations and organizations are profoundly concerned with ensuring respect for Indigenous peoples’ rights, particularly their rights to self-determination, health, security and well-being. Related Treaty rights of Indigenous peoples must also be fully considered.

    The Coalition for the Human Rights of Indigenous Peoples is a network of Indigenous Nations, national and regional Indigenous Peoples is a network of Indigenous Nations, national and regional Indigenous peoples’ organizations, human rights groups, and individual experts and advocates. The Coalition works to promote understanding and implementation of international standards for advancing the human rights of Indigenous peoples, in particular, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

    April 15, 2020

    Indigenous Peoples is a network of Indigenous Nations, national and regional Indigenous peoples’ organizations, human rights groups, and individual experts and advocates. The Coalition works to promote understanding and implementation of international standards for advancing the human rights of Indigenous peoples, in particular, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

    In light of the highly infectious nature of COVID-19, and the particular threat that it poses to vulnerable communities with inadequate access to health care, housing, water and other essential services, it is imperative that federal, provincial and territorial governments respect the right of Indigenous peoples to set conditions of entry into their territories. Indigenous communities must be able to restrict access of industry workers, tourists, cottagers, and others. Where Indigenous communities have required suspension of certain activities in their territories, this must be respected.

    April 14, 2020

    Indigenous Peoples is a network of Indigenous Nations, national and regional Indigenous peoples’ organizations, human rights groups, and individual experts and advocates. The Coalition works to promote understanding and implementation of international standards for advancing the human rights of Indigenous peoples, in particular, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

    In light of the highly infectious nature of COVID-19, and the particular threat that it poses to vulnerable communities with inadequate access to health care, housing, water and other essential services, it is imperative that federal, provincial and territorial governments respect the right of Indigenous peoples to set conditions of entry into their territories. Indigenous communities must be able to restrict access of industry workers, tourists, cottagers, and others. Where Indigenous communities have required suspension of certain activities in their territories, this must be respected.

    April 11, 2020
    Protecting communities, supporting workers and their families should be Canada's priority

    The global pandemic is a frightening time for humanity. Yet all around us, people are working hard to adapt to our current reality, support one another, protect the vulnerable, and together dream of a better future. In urging all levels of government to respect human rights and protect essential workers and their families, frontline healthcare workers, and communities, we are speaking together with one, unified voice. 

    People across Canada living in remote, rural and Indigenous communities with lesser access to health services, hospital beds and crucially, ventilators to help the critically ill, are calling on all of us to help them shut down the known pathways of infection into their communities.  They are asking us to help them stay healthy by staying away. 

    April 02, 2020

    The global climate strikes that saw millions of people marching in the streets in 2019 are going online in response to the need for physical distancing to prevent the spread of covid-19.

    We encourage you to stay safe at home and join the climate strike online tomorrow, and every Friday until the end of April. To join the strike online here is what to do:

    1.    Make a climate strike sign
    2.    Take a photo of yourself holding the sign
    3.    Post to your favourite social media channel with the hashtag #climatestrikeonline.

    We would love it if you would also tag Amnesty Canada at @amnestynow so that we can see your posts.

    Although we are physically distant at the moment, we are more united than ever. We may be stuck inside, but we can continue advocating for human rights. After all, a focus on human rights is crucial to fight the covid crisis in a fast and fair way, and the same applies to the climate crisis.

    See you at the #climatestrikeonline!

    April 02, 2020

    April 2, 2020 – In the lead up to Refugee Rights Day, refugee, human rights, legal and civil liberties organizations are renewing their call for the Government of Canada to reopen the Canada-US border to refugee claims. Effective March 21, 2020, an Order-In-Council prohibits refugee claimants arriving from the United States to enter Canada for the purposes of refugee protection.

    The Canadian Council for Refugees, Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, Amnesty International, and BC Civil Liberties Association jointly call on the government to reconsider its closure of the Canada-US border to refugees. This closure violates international law. With Refugee Rights Day being marked across Canada on April 4, these organizations are calling attention to the grave threat to refugee rights with the prohibition on refugee arrivals at the land border.

    March 30, 2020

    Toronto, March 30, 2020 — Canada’s decision to shut the border to refugee claimants puts those individuals in danger, is out of step with public health measures designed to curb the spread of COVID-19, and runs counter to our international legal obligations. From moral, public health and legal perspectives, closing the border to refugee claimants is wrong.

    On March 19, 2020, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada announced new border entry restrictions that preserved the right to seek refugee protection while also protecting public health through non-discriminatory screening and self-isolation measures. Then, on March 20, the government abandoned this sensible and humane approach, and announced a new decision made with the US government to shut the border almost entirely to people seeking refugee protection in Canada when entering from the US.

    March 25, 2020
    Human rights organization recommends 10 guiding principles for pandemic response

    OTTAWA – Amnesty International is urging governments across Canada to establish oversight committees tasked with monitoring the human rights impact of decisions, policies and laws adopted to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “History has shown that, in times of crisis, governments often do not assess and redress human rights violations until after the fact,” said Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada’s English branch. “By taking proactive steps now, to put strong oversight in place, governments have an important opportunity to deliberately ensure that human rights concerns will be anticipated, identified and minimized from the outset.”

    March 20, 2020

    Today’s news that the Canadian government will turn back refugee claimants attempting to cross the Canada-U.S. border is a shameful breach of international law that risks further endangering lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Amnesty International. 

    “This is beyond disappointing and disgraceful,” said Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada. “Today’s news only serves to further inflame misconceptions and racism rather than offering reassurance and leadership. When it comes to refugees, Canada is stepping back at a time when we need to step forward.” 

    March 16, 2020

    Manitoba Hydro states that its operations are “good for Manitobans, good for our environment.” But good for which Manitobans?

    Decades of Manitoba Hydro operations in the north of the province are associated with harms to the land, water, and animals, as well as profound adverse impacts on the health, safety, and wellbeing of Indigenous peoples. The impacts include a heightened risk that Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit people will experience violence.

    Take action now calling on Manitoba Hydro to address the discrimination, harassement, and violence at Keeyask!

    March 11, 2020
    Quesnel Lake/Yuct Ne Senxiymetkwe: a Love Story 

    Christine McLean is ready to retire. After running a successful electrical business in Calgary for the last 20 years, the Kamloops, BC born and raised McLean planned to move back to BC with her husband, Eric. In 2014 they began laying plans to spend their retirement years living in what Christine describes as, “paradise” – a gorgeous log cabin on a large, treed lot perched above the stunningly beautiful Mitchell Bay on Quesnel Lake. For Christine, it is a place for the spirit to rest and the heart to soar.

    For Secwepemc and Nuxalk activist Nuskmata (Jacinda Mack), Quesnel Lake is part of her cultural heritage. Raised in the northern Secwepemc community of Xat’sull, Nuskamata spent her youth out on the land and eventually came to work for her Secwepemc community as the Natural Resources manager. Her mother taught her that for Indigenous peoples, “our economy walks on the land and swims in the waters.” She calls the relationship between her community and the land a ‘love story’. 

    March 11, 2020

    To: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Premier Dwight Ball, Premier Caroline Cochrane, Premier Doug Ford, Premier Blaine Higgs, Premier John Horgan, Premier Jason Kenney, Premier Dennis King, Premier François Legault, Premier Stephen McNeil, Premier Scott Moe, Premier Brian Pallister, Premier Joe Savikataaq, Premier Sandy Silver

    March 5, 2020

    Dear Prime Minister and Premiers,

    RE: Urgent need to respond to violence and hate directed at human rights defenders in Canada

    We are writing this Open Letter, in advance of next week’s First Ministers’ Meeting, to urge that you individually and collectively commit to measures that will ensure that human rights defenders across Canada, particularly women and Indigenous human rights defenders working on issues related to territory, land and the environment, are recognised for their human rights work and able to carry out that vital work free from threats and violence, in a safe and enabling environment.

    March 04, 2020

    Hilda Anderson-Pyrz is from O-Pipon-Na-Piwin Cree Nation in northern Manitoba, a community located on South Indian Lake, which was once home to North America’s largest white fish industry, before being decimated by Manitoba Hydro activities. Hilda is the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Liaison Unit Manager with Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) and she is based in Thompson, Manitoba.  MKO is a non-profit, political advocacy organization providing a collective voice on issues related to the rights of member First Nations in northern Manitoba. MKO was a Party with Standing to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

    Amnesty International spoke with Hilda in advance of International Women’s Day 2020.

    Pages

    Subscribe to Canada