Social Justice

Queer Issues

The protection of Queer rights is an ongoing struggle, as Martin Luther King said: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." While many rights are being taken away in the United States, we do not have to look far to see that the effect has trickled into Canada. From New Brunswick, to Ontario, to Saskatchewan, Trans rights are being targeted, and students are being harassed. BC has a strong SOGI backing; however, there is still a backlash from certain target groups, and censorship through book bans has

been successful in some BC schools. Therefore, it is paramount that we, as teachers, help to support the safety of our students – both online and in our schools – by educating ourselves through Pro-D opportunities, connecting with Queer podcasts/literature, finding ways to ensure equitable representation in all levels of our schools and leadership, as well as standing up to hate.

Women’s Rights
With the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the United States, women's rights are at risk. Our students are watching the media and looking to us for guidance and education regarding their rights as people who identify as women. As teachers, it is important to discuss these issues within our classrooms. We need to work alongside our union to lobby for equal pay and improvements to pension repayment from maternity leave. It is also paramount that we have equitable representation in union leadership at all levels.

Indigenous Rights

Aboriginal Rights were enshrined in the Canadian Constitution in 1982, thanks to the hard work of Indigenous Activists, such as George and Arthur Manuel. Since then there have been many steps forward regarding Indigenous Land Titles, Indigenous Rights, and the recognition of historical wrongs; however, with many steps forward, there are still many more to go. As Jody Wilson-Raybould states: “True reconciliation is not an event … it is ongoing, a long-term undertaking of creating new patterns of social, cultural, and economic relations … true reconciliation requires marathoners. Slow, fast, walking, running, cheering, and supporting” (True Reconciliation, pg. 270-271, 277). To be a part of reconcili-action, it is important to support the ongoing cultural revitalization of Indigenous peoples of the area, as well as bring age-appropriate conversations into your classrooms.

UNESCO

The UNESCO Associated Schools Network (ASPNet) is an international network linking students and teachers to other schools to
support them in working together on peace, human rights, intercultural dialogue, and sustainable development. Schools in the BC UNESCO Associated School Network are vectors of positive change promoting education in areas such as Human rights, Gender equality,
Reconciliation, and Sustainability. You can find more information at the following
site: http://bcunesconetwork.weebly.com

Nichelle Penney, (Sa-Hali Sec.) – npenney@exc.sd73.bc.ca
Danielle Livingstone, (NorKam) – dlivingstone@exc.sd73.bc.ca

If you Have Any Questions Call Us On (010)123-456-7890