Founded in 1983 - United for Diversity and Racial Equality


Montreal, March 5, 2019 — To promote policy change and effective legal strategies on systemic discrimination in public and private services, CRARR will host a Forum entitled, “Systemic Discrimination or Bad Service?”

In light of recent experiences in civil rights litigation in Quebec where situations of systemic discrimination against racialized people and people with disabilities are often dismissed by authorities as merely “bad service”, the Forum will seek to develop an effective conceptual framework on systemic discrimination in the service delivery sector; to examine how to apply an intersectional analysis to this approach; and to identify the strategies and actions, including legal strategies, to address systemic barriers in law and public policy that deny equal access to disadvantaged groups.

The Forum will address systemic discrimination in education, health and social services, public and private security services, and transport and commercial services.

David Lepofsky, nationally recognized disability rights lawyer and Chair of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance, will be the keynote speaker.

Participating legal and policy experts include:
• Adelle Blackett, Professor of Law, McGill University
• Alain Babineau, retired RCMP officer and Advisor, CRARR
• Amy Ma, Co-Chair, the MUHC Patients Committee
• Aymar Missakila, Lawyer, CRARR
• Bonnie Zehavi, Programs Director, Desta Black Youth Network
• Brittany Williams, Executive Director, the Legal Information Clinic at McGill
• Colleen Sheppard, Professor of Law, McGill University
• Edward Ou Jin Lee, Professor of Social Work, Université de Montréal
• Julien Feldman, Commissioner, English Montreal School Board
• Katharine Cukier, Disability Rights Advocate
• Mei Chiu, Lawyer, Ouellet Nadon
• Myrna Lashley, Professor of Psychiatry, McGill University
• Pearl Eliadis, Professor of Law, McGill University
• Philip Howard, Professor of Education, McGill University
• Sam Kuhn, Disability Rights Advocate
• Walter Chi Yan Tom, Coordinator, Concordia Student Union Legal Information Clinic
• Yavar Hameed, Lawyer and Representative, Canadian Muslim Lawyers Association
• Zoua Vang, Professor of Sociology, McGill University
More panelists are to be confirmed.

The Forum’s partners include the Centre for Human Rights & Legal Pluralism and the Institute for Health and Social Policy at McGill University, the CSU Legal Information Clinic, PINAY, and law student associations at McGill University such as the Indigenous Law Association (ILADA), the Black Law Students’ Association of McGill and Criminal Law McGill.

Thanks to the donations from the Concordia Student Union and the Institute for Health and Social Policy, 25 students from Concordia University and 25 students from McGill University will be offered complimentary registration on a first come, first served basis. Twenty five (25) more complimentary places are offered to students from other institutions and people with a low income affiliated with community organizations. All students are invited to indicate their fields of studies and educational institutions when registering.

CRARR is awaiting a positive response from the Students’ Society of McGill University for funding for complimentary registration for more McGill students.

The event will take place on Saturday March 16th, 2019, from 9:00am to 4:30pm, at Concordia University, 1455 De Maisonneuve West, Montreal. The event is open to the public and the media. The forum will be mostly in English, with many speakers making presentations in French; due to the lack of resources, we regret that simultaneous bilingual and sign language interpretation will not be available.

In compliance with the Barreau du Quebec standards, this seminar is accredited by a recognized provider for 6.5 hours of continuing legal education

Registration fees are $20 for students and people with low income; $40 for NGOs; and $75 for professionals and institutions (taxes included). Lunch, coffee and refreshments will be provided.

For reservation and registration, please send your name and billing information to Interac payment is accepted.