Tag Archives: Regulation

Discussion IS YOUR BODY A TOXIC SITE? reproductive health as an environmental issue

Osgoode (and FES) colleague Dayna Nadine Scott, editor of the recent “Our Chemical Selves”, will be a panellist at this evening of discussion hosted by the Politics of Evidence Working GroupHow is human reproductive health affected by everyday encounters with a group of chemicals known as endocrine disruptors? This evening’s discussion will explore what we know about the endocrine disrupting chemicals in our waters, air, and consumer products, and our relationship to science, government, industry and environmentalism. What does the research tell us? How are they regulated here in Canada? WHY DON’T WE KNOW MORE? IS YOUR BODY A TOXIC SITE? reproductive health as an environmental issue AN EVENING OF DISCUSSION THE POLITICS OF EVIDENCE WORKING GROUP PRESENTS: WHEN Friday, May 15, 2015 WHERE University of Toronto, Emmanuel College, Rm 001 75 Queen’s Park Crescent TIME 7pm. Doors open at 6pm ADMISSION Free Space is Limited. Please register at: www.environmentaldefence.ca/panel Join scientist Dr. Miriam Diamond, lawyer Dr. Dayna Scott, and science studies scholar Dr. Michelle Murphy to discuss the current debates surrounding our exposure to endocrine disruptors and what you can do to change it. IN PARTNERSHIP WITH Dr. Miriam Diamond Dr. Michelle Murphy Dr. Dayna Scott

May 15 7PM (link with more information and registration)

How is human reproductive health affected by everyday  encounters with a group of chemicals known as endocrine disruptors? This evening’s discussion will explore what we know about the endocrine disrupting chemicals in our waters, air, and consumer products, and our relationship to science, government, industry and environmentalism. What does the research tell us? How are they regulated here in Canada?



PDF poster for Sharing/printing


cover image for Our Chemical Selves 2015 UBC Press Dayna Nadine Scott ed


[Friday January 24] After Bedford v. Canada: What next for regulating sex work in Canada?

Poster_PrintI’m* going to moderate this panel, which takes on some very difficult issues in the wake of an important Supreme Court decision.

After Bedford v. Canada: What next for regulating sex work in Canada?
Come and hear an array of panelists discuss the new legal landscape and the challenges that now face us after the Supreme Court struck down many – but not all – of Canada’s criminal laws about sex work.
What happens when legal doctrine tries to address street realities? Six experts offer different visions of the road ahead.

  • Cheryl Auger Board Member, Maggie’s: The Toronto Sex Worker Action Project
  • Christa Big Canoe Legal Advocacy Director, Aboriginal Legal Services of Toronto
  • Jamie Cameron Professor, Osgoode Hall Law School
  • Brenda Cossman Professor & Director, Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies
  • Katrina Pacey Legal Director, Pivot Legal Society
  • Kim Pate Executive Director, Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies

Friday, January 24, 2014
3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
University College, Room 179
15 King’s College Circle, University of Toronto


Generously supported by the Scotiabank University of Toronto Faculty of Law Lecture and Conference Fund and the Institute for Feminist Legal Studies, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University,
and co-sponsored by the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies and the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies, University of Toronto

PDF poster here with map.


* sonia lawrence, ifls director

Mayanthi Fernando at Osgoode on Regulating Intimacy – Religion, Sex and Secular Cunning

Fernando-WebAnthropologist Mayanthi Fernando from UC Santa Cruz gave a very interesting and very well attended talk as part of the Law Religion and Social Thought symposium today (check the website later for the tape, if you missed the talk).

The paper explored tensions in the way that liberal republican France situates and interrogates Muslim women in terms of their religion and their sexuality – both areas typically placed by liberal thought into the “private” arena.  I’m worried about doing it justice so will say only that it will be forthcoming in Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 2014 (speaking of, have a look at the set of things forthcoming from Signs in 2013! Set aside some time).

Fernando’s work focuses on the situation of Muslim women in France –“Exceptional Citizens: Secular Muslim Women and the Politics of Difference in France.” Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale 17:3 (2009), pp. 379-392 is perhaps a decently representative choice.  While not focused on law, law takes on a particular significance in her work, perhaps because it is a state forum where attitudes are on display and both demands and claims are made.  In her talk today, she began with two cases to illustrate the tension she sees – first, a marriage annulment involving a Muslim couple (here is a Reuters report) and second, a discrimination claim brought by a Muslim woman told to remove her niqab whilst in the public areas of (ifI recall correctly was) an inn. Fernando focused on how Muslim women in France – particularly but not only those who wear the headscarf or niqab –  are faced (!)  the relatively contradictory demand and compulsion to talk about intimate, “private” aspects of their lives in order to justify themselves as members of the French public, referring to Foucault’s idea  of “incitement to discourse” which can serve a regulatory and categorizing function.

As a scholar working in what is now an interdisciplinary space, Fernando’s work is cited in articles appearing in legal journals and by scholars attached to law schools.  See, for instance:

To ask that we pay greater attention to context, and in particular, to power and material effects, resonates with the work of such scholars as sociologist Dicle Kog˘acıog˘ lu and anthropologists Lila Abu-Lughod
and Mayanthi Fernando, who have all recently argued that particular gendered discourses about Muslim women divert attention from where it should instead be placed: institutional politics (Kog˘acıog˘ lu); history and politics (Abu-Lughod); and structural root causes of social and economic problems (Fernando). While the cases these scholars examine are varied (honor crimes in Turkey, u.s. discourse about women in Afghanistan, and
“secular Muslim women” in France), all point to how gendered discourses about the oppression faced by Muslim women function transnationally to fuel a general vision of Islam as synonymous with the oppression of women,
which absolutely ignores fundamental issues at work.

CFP: Privatization and Social Responsibility (Feminist Legal Theory Project: Vulnerability)

Atlanta.  In February.  Short turn around time on proposals, but there is flexibility.

This one came via Osgood Grad student and excellent much missed person Stu Marvel, now visiting at Atlanta.  The topic is an important one and ripe for cross-border conversations.  The Conference is Feb 17-18, and the due date for proposals  is December 8, with some flexibility. I’m sure there is a paper to be written here on the attempt to “gender” Ontario’s most recent Social Assistance Review (likewise I am intrigued by the statistics around the digital divide in the US and note the increasing delivery of state services through this non state medium).  Finally, it does seem that the Attawapiskat “crisis” (in quotes because of the variety of different interpretations of what the crisis actually consists of, not because I doubt one exists) and the discussion around “solutions” could be located within the scope of this call.

Enough of me.  Go and draft your ticket to the land of coca cola (among many other things):

SUBMISSIONS PROCEDURE Email a paper proposal by by Thursday, December 8th to Emily Hlavaty, FLT Program Coordinator: emily.hlavaty@emory.edu Decisions will be made prior to the holidays and working paper drafts to be duplicated and distributed prior to the Workshop will be due January 30th.


Emory University School of Law, Atlanta, Georgia [PDF of the call here]

This workshop explores from a cross-cultural perspective how privatization impacts contemporary feminist and social justice approaches to public responsibility. Feminisms have long problematized divisions between the private and the political, partly in reaction to the unprecedented privatization of state responsibilities and public welfare over the past 30 years. Recent critical legal scholarship on vulnerability, state negligence, and resilience can complicate and deepen our understanding of the problems generated by privatization in the 21st century.
We invite papers that explore the effects of diverse forms of privatization from national and cross-national perspectives. Disciplinary and interdisciplinary papers exploring the effects of these privatizations on institutions, individuals, society, welfare, education, healthcare, capitalism, government, military and law are welcomed. State regulation, particularly in the form of socioeconomic welfare, is frequently criticized for policing individual choices and perpetuating social and legal forms of violence. We are particularly interested in how a feminist or progressive analysis of state institutional involvement might mitigate these negative effects and the impact of privatization.

This workshop is the most recent in a series examining the political and theoretical possibilities inherent in thinking about justice and state responsibility in terms of human “vulnerability.”  It builds upon earlier sessions expanding our understandings of vulnerability as a constant part of the human condition that is universal, even as it may be experienced in particular and uneven ways.

These discussions are grounded in the work of the Vulnerability and Human Condition Initiative, founded by Professor Martha Albertson Fineman, and aim to carve out academic space within which scholars can imagine models of state support and legal protection that focus on the commonalities of the human condition – most centrally the universal vulnerability of human beings and the imperfection of the societal institutions created to address that vulnerability.  For more information on the Vulnerability and Human Condition Initiative please visit: http://web.gs.emory.edu/vulnerability/about/index.html

World Bank Report: Women, Business and the Law: Removing Barriers to Economic Inclusion

Women-Business-and-the-Law-2012.pdf (application/pdf Object).

Interesting report from the World Bank using empirical measures to ask what governments are doing in terms of “removing barriers to economic inclusion”.

Measuring how regulations and institutions differentiate between women and men in ways that may affect women’s incentives or capacity to work or to set up and run a business provides a basis for improving regulation. Women,
Business and the Law objectively measures such legal differentiations on the basis of gender in 141 economies around the world, covering six areas: accessing institutions, using property, getting a job, providing incentives to work, building credit, and going to court. Within these six areas, we examined 21 legal differentiations for unmarried women and 24 legal differentiations for married women for a total of 45 gender differences, covering aspects such as being able to get a job, sign a contract, register a business, open a bank account, own property, work at night or in all industries, and retire at the same age as men. This is a simplified measure of legal differentiation that does not capture the full extent of the gender gap, nor does it indicate the relative importance of each aspect covered, but does provide a basic understanding of the prevalence of gender based legal differences in each economy


h/t Osgoode PhD student Shanthi Senthe for the link and suggestion!