Elizabeth Fry Week 2021: Human Rights in Action5/3/2021
Every year, the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies and local Elizabeth Fry Societies across the country mark Elizabeth Fry Week. We continue to mark Elizabeth Fry Week on the week leading up to mother’s day because most women in prison are mothers, and many of these women were the sole supporters of their families at the time they were incarcerated. When mothers are sentenced to prison, their children are sentenced to separation. We draw attention to this reality by ending Elizabeth Fry Week on Mother’s Day each year. This year’s theme is Human Rights in Action.
We’ve selected this theme to draw attention to the many ways that CAEFS, local Elizabeth Fry Societies & their clients, and people who are incarcerated are working to defend and uphold the human rights of people in our communities.
Check us out us on social media and follow the hashtags #EFryWeek2021 and #HumanRightsinAction to stay up to date and join the conversation.
Human Rights in Action Videos
Human Rights in Action: Our Work
Emilie Coyle (Executive Director of CAEFS) joins Sheri Pranteau (CAEFS Advocacy Liaison) to talk about how CAEFS approaches human rights issues in the context of prison. Emilie explains the role of the regional advocates in monitoring conditions of confinement, as well as the role of the national office plays in addressing systemic human rights abuses. Emilie and Sheri both remind us that incarceration should not undermine your human rights, and how important awareness raising is in effecting change.
This video is part of Elizabeth Fry Week 2021 (May 3rd to 7th). This year’s theme is Human Rights in Action. To help mark the week, we will be posting videos from across the Elizabeth Fry Network that discuss the human rights issues facing marginalized and criminalized people and draw attention to the many ways that CAEFS, local Elizabeth Fry Societies & their
clients, and people who are incarcerated are working to defend and uphold the human rights of people in our
Droits de la personne en action : travail, éducation et logement
In this video, Ruth Gagnon (Executive Director of Elizabeth Fry Québec) joins Johanne Wendy Bariteau (CAEFS Regional Coordinator for Ontario and Quebec) to discuss some of the human rights issues facing incarcerated people in quebec, including fair pay, access to education, and proper accommodations. Ruth shares where they have seen some wins in their advocacy work, and how you can get involved.
Human Rights in Action: Bodily Autonomy
Emma Halpern (Executive Director of Elizabeth Fry Mainland Nova Scotia and Regional Advocate in the Atlantic Region) joins Emilie Coyle (Executive Director of CAEFS) to talk about two key issues facing people incarcerated at the Nova Institution: sexual assault and dry-celling.
Emma and Emilie discuss how both of these issues are connected by a common right: the right to bodily autonomy – and how incarceration is an inherent threat to this right and how violence perpetrated by the prison is nothing short of state sanctioned sexual violence.
Human Rights in Action: The Right to Dignity
Michelle Smith (Board Member of Elizabeth Fry Toronto and Ontario Regional Advocate) and Cory Roslyn (Executive Director of Elizabeth Fry Northeastern Ontario, CAEFS Board Member, CEFSO President, and Ontario Regional Advocate) join Johanne Wendy Bariteau (CAEFS Regional Coordinator for Ontario and Quebec) to talk about the right to accommodation at the Grand Valley Institution in Ontario.
Michelle, Cory, and Johanne all emphasize the importance of dignity, documentation, and persistence in CAEFS advocacy work – and discuss what keeps them fighting for change on the road to abolition (plus what you can do to help).
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News Release “Advocates Celebrate “Important win” Following the Striking Down of Inhumane Dry Cell Law in Nova Scotia”
Today, a Nova Scotia supreme court judge struck down the law that permits the use of dry celling, finding that it breaches section 15 of the Charter.