Category Archives: Uncategorized

Prof. Adelle Blackett @ IFLS: Author and Readers of “Everyday Transgressions”: Friday March 20, 1230-230 NEW TIME

Join us on the eve of the International Day for the Elimination of Racism to talk about “the story behind the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Decent Work for Domestic Workers Convention No. 189, and its accompanying Recommendation No. 201 which in 2011 created the first comprehensive international standards to extend fundamental protections and rights to the millions of domestic workers laboring in other peoples’ homes throughout the world“. In this accessible and fascinating book, Prof. Blackett ( Canada Research Chair in Transnational Labour Law and Development at McGill Law) ” [a]s the principal legal architect…takes us behind the scene to show us how Convention No. 189 transgresses the everyday law of the household workplace to embrace domestic worker’s human rights claim to be workers like any other – and like no other. ” Other academic guest commentators including including Professors Amar Bhatia, Michele Johnson, Jennifer Nedelsky, Kerry Rittich, Adrian Smith, Ethel Tungohan & Leah Vosko. This event is co-sponsored by the Global Labour Research Centre at York.

Friday March 20, 2020 **NEW TIME** 1230PM 230 IKB 2027 (Faculty Lounge). Refreshments will be served. Space is limited, so please register to avoid disappointment:

This Institute for Feminist Legal Studies event graciously co sponsored by the Global Labour Research Centre at York.

Add to Calendar


[bio from McGill Law]: Adelle Blackett, Ad. E., is Professor of Law and Canada Research Chair in Transnational Labour Law and Development at the Faculty of Law, McGill University, where she teaches and researches in the areas of labour and employment law, trade regulation, law and development, critical race theory and slavery and the law. Professor Blackett holds a B.A. in History from Queen’s University, civil law and common law degrees from McGill, and an LL.M. and a doctorate in law from Columbia University. Widely published in English, French and Spanish in the emerging field of transnational labour law, in 2015, she co-edited a Research Handbook on Transnational Labour Law. Her book manuscript entitled Everyday Transgressions: Domestic Workers’ Transnational Challenge to International Labour Law (Cornell University Press) was published in Spring 2019.

Professor Blackett is the recipient of prestigious research fellowships, notably the Social Science and Humanities Research Council’s Bora Laskin National Fellowship in Human Rights Research in 2010, and the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Fellowship in 2016 on transnational futures of international labour law, for which she organized an eponymous course in winter 2019.

She was a William Dawson Scholar at McGill from 2007 to 2016, and has been a visiting scholar at the African Development Bank, the Australian National University and SOAS (University of London). She founded and directs the Labour Law and Development Research Laboratory (LLDRL) at McGill, was a founding steering committee member of the international Labour Law Research Network (LLRN), and is member of the Quebec based Inter-University Research Centre on Globalization and Work (CRIMT).

A former official of the International Labour Office in Geneva, Professor Blackett has been an ILO expert on international standard setting on decent work for domestic workers (2008-2011) leading to the adoption of ILO Convention No. 189 and Recommendation No. 201; and in a labour law reform process in Haiti (2011-2014). In 2009, she was unanimously appointed by the National Assembly of Quebec to the province’s Human rights and youth rights Commission, where she served as a commissioner for seven (7) years.

A member of the Law Society of Upper Canada and the Barreau du Québec, she was awarded the latter’s Christine Tourigny Award of Merit and the status of advocate emeritus in 2014, in recognition of her social commitment and her contributions to the advancement of women. She received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.  In 2015, the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers awarded her its Pathfinder Award for her significant contributions to the legal community and the community at large.

In November 2018, Adelle Blackett was appointed to the Human Rights Expert Panel of the Government of Canada’s renewed Court Challenges Program. She was appointed to the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) Chapter 23 (Trade and Labour) Roster of experts in December 2018. Professor Blackett was elected an associate member of the International Academy of Comparative Law in July 2019.

Prof. Bethany Hastie @ Osgoode: Workplace Sexual Harassment: Assessing the Effectiveness of Human Rights Law in Canada | Thursday JANUARY 23 230PM

poster for event. all information available in the text of the post.

Prof Hastie’s recently published report analyzes substantive decisions on the merits concerning workplace sexual harassment at each of the BC and Ontario Human Rights Tribunals from 2000-2018, with a view to identifying how the law of sexual harassment is understood, interpreted and applied by the Tribunals’ adjudicators. In particular, this report examines whether, and to what extent, gender-based stereotypes and myths known to occur in criminal justice proceedings arise in the human rights context.

Prof Hastie’s talk will be followed by brief commentary from Professor Janet Mosher and Osgoode McMurtry Fellow Fathima Cader.

2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Room 2028, Osgoode Hall Law School
Refreshments served, PLEASE RSVP!

Fighting for Justice: Trans Heroes in Canadian Case Law

(from my better late than never, can it be November? category, i meant to have this up in September…)

TRU Prof Sam Singer and TRU student Stephanie Weidmann’s short piece highlighting some Canadian caselaw in Art/iculation, an interdisciplinary print and digital magazine, is available here. Prof Singer is an OBA Foundation Chief Justice of Ontario Fellow in Legal Ethics and Professionalism Research (2019-2020) for The Ethics of Trans Competent Lawyering and Judging, see here. Sam is very keen on tax and tax policy, see here.

Interested in the report mentioned at FN1 in Fighting for Justice? For more information about the Canadian Human Rights Commission report, “Trans Rights, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression in Canada”, please contact the author, Samuel Singer.

Finally! Sam also has a piece in LGBTQ2+ LAW: PRACTICE ISSUES AND ANALYSIS edited by Joanna Radbord. IFLS is a co sponsor of the launch for the book, which is coming up: Monday November 25 630-830 at Glad Day Books

Chapter 1: The Gay Agenda: A Short History of Queer Rights in Canada (1969-2018)
Chapter 2: LGBTQ2+ Cultural Competency
Chapter 3: Human Rights
Chapter 4: LGBTQ2+ Equality Claims Under the Charter
Chapter 5: Trans Competent Lawyering
Chapter 6: Family Law
Chapter 7: Polyamorous and Non-Dyadic Relationships
Chapter 8: Conflict of Laws
Chapter 9: Estate Planning Issues
Chapter 10: LGBTQ2+ Immigration Issues
Chapter 11: Children and Youth Legal Issues
Chapter 12: Criminal Law and Public Health

Find an excerpt here on SLAW.

here on SLAW.

Stereotyping & Deaths of Indigenous women in Police Custody (Tanya Day & Debra Chrisjohn)

Here is a pdf of the decision in R v Doering, in which Justice Pomerance convicts a police officer of (inter alia) criminal negligence causing the death of Debra Chrisjohn, a woman “of indigenous heritage” who died in London, Ontario, while in police custody. Ms. Chrisjohn died September 7 2016, of a heart attack.

Reading the media/social media reports of what happened to Ms. Chrisjohn (here; here) put me in mind of media reports about the Inquest into the death of Tanya Day, a Yorta Yorta woman who died in Castlemaine Police Station nr Melbourne December 22 2017. For a review see here. The Inquest took place this past August – I read coverage in the Guardian by Calla Wahlquist @callapilla in the Guardian (eg, this).

The decision of Justice Pomerance is highly critical of the police response. She also, in one of the last paragraphs, notes:

[129] Finally, Ms. Chrisjohn was of indigenous heritage. There is no suggestion that this played any role in decisions made by the police in this case. Nonetheless, it has been observed that indigenous women and girls are particularly vulnerable to stereotyping. This includes stereotypes relating to alcohol and drug abuse. (see the Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Woman and Girls (Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls).. On this point, see also R. v. Barton, 2019 SCC 33.

Thanks to Kate Kehoe (@katekehoe1) who i have followed forever but never met, for reaching out and sending the judgment (which isn’t on CANLII yet).

As many of you know, there are so many scholars who have recognized the connections between police relations with Indigenous peoples in different settler-colonial states. The deaths of Ms. Chrisjohn, and Ms. Day, do illustrate that connection, the hard work that families, advocates and communities are doing to speak out, to mourn, bring these things to mainstream attention, to use law to demand accountability. So just…thinking transnationally.


Aziza Ahmed at Osgoode Thurs November 14 |FEMINISM’S MEDICINE: Risk, Race, Gender, and Law in the AIDS Epidemic

Poster for the Department of Health and Human Services demonstration designed by ACT UP/DC Women’s Committee, 1990.

THURSDAY 14 November 2019 1230PM Osgoode Hall Law School IKB 2027 (Faculty Lounge)

Lunch Served

How did the world come to see women as “at risk” for HIV? How did a disease of men come to kill women? Against a linear narrative of scientific discovery and progress, Feminism’s Medicine argues that it was women’s rights lawyers and activists that fundamentally altered the legal and scientific response to the epidemic by changing core conceptions of who was at risk of contracting HIV.  In other words, feminists not only changed the legal governance of AIDS, they altered the scientific trajectory of the epidemic.  In doing so, they moved resources towards women in the epidemic.  Feminists advocated for women to be seen as a risk group for HIV in multiple locations: in U.S. administrative agencies, courthouses across the country, as well as in global governance institutions. The talk will consider the impact of a diverse range of feminisms for its impact on scientific ideas, legal reform agendas, and the distributional consequences of feminist engagement in the AIDS epidemic. 

Aziza Ahmed is Associate Professor of Law at Northeastern School of Law. She is an expert in health law, human rights, property law, international law, and development. Her interdisciplinary scholarship focuses on issues of both domestic and international law. Join the IFLS for this talk.

A few recent or forthcoming publications from Professor Ahmed

  • Handbook on Race, Racism, and the Law (Edward Elgar Publishing, forthcoming) (with Guy-Uriel Charles).
  • Gender Violence (forthcoming) (with Donna Coker, Leigh Goodmark, and Deborah Weisman).
  • “Forensic Science in Self-Induced Abortion Prosecutions,” Boston University Law Review (forthcoming 2019)
  • “Health and Human Rights: Harm-Reduction and the Fight to Decriminalize Public Health Services,” American Society of International Law Proceedings (forthcoming 2019). 
  • “Race and Assisted Reproduction: Implications for Public Health,” 86 Fordham Law Review 2811 (2018).