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National Indigenous History Month

We, the Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) want to honour National Indigenous History Month and the many contributions that First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada have made and continue to make in the fight against colonialism and racism. We stand unequivocally in solidarity with Indigenous struggles for self-determination and self-government.

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BLAC Statement on Policing and Anti-Black Racism

BLAC has released a statement and demands on policing and anti-Black racism.
“The work of unravelling systemic anti-Black racism and white supremacy is a war that must be waged on multiple fronts. It necessitates an immediate change to the status quo across policing, criminal justice, education, housing and health. We must stop criminalizing poverty,

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Online Form Launched to Help Defend Rights of People Experiencing Homelessness in Toronto During COVID-19 Pandemic

An online form has been launched at COVIDShelterRights.ca that allows anyone to anonymously report situations where the City of Toronto is not living up to its commitments to protect people experiencing homelessness from COVID-19 in its shelter system.

On May 15, 2020, the City committed to use its best efforts to:

ensure two meters of distance between all shelter beds;

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BLAC is hiring a Staff Lawyer (Contract)

BLAC is hiring a Staff Lawyer (Contract).
See the job description here:
BLAC Staff Lawyer Job Description
Closing Date: July 8, 2020.
While we thank all applicants for their interest, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

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BLAC Submissions on Bill 161

BLAC is concerned that Bill 161, Smarter and Stronger Justice Act, 2020 proposes to change LAO’s core mandate of promoting access to justice for low-income Ontario residents. At this critical time, BLAC believes that this will have a negative impact on the Black community and will create a further crisis of access to justice that reinforces existing inequities.

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Know Your Rights Toolkit for Protesters

The Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) and the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers (CABL) have created a resource for protesters who choose to peacefully protest during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here to read the full resource.
 

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City of Toronto Commits to Essential Physical Distancing Standards to Protect People Experiencing Homelessness from COVID-19

May 19, 2020 – The Black Legal Action Centre, Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Sanctuary Ministries of Toronto, Aboriginal Legal Services, Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario, and HIV & AIDS Legal Clinic Ontario have reached an agreement with the City of Toronto today.
“BLAC became involved in this litigation because, we see every day through our work,

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Ontario Extends ODSP/OW Emergency Benefit Until July 2020

Effective May 1, 2020, the ODSP/OW Emergency Benefit has been extended until July 2020. The Emergency Benefit is for people who have additional costs related to COVID-19 (e.g., travel costs to pick up essential items for people avoiding public transit, delivery costs for essential items for people or families who are self-isolated or quarantined).

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BLAC and its coalition partners take the City of Toronto to Court over the shelter crisis

The Black Legal Action Centre and its coalition partners have filed a constitutional and human rights challenge against the City of Toronto today.
We are deeply concerned that the City continues to operate and oversee shelters that do not adhere to physical distancing standards. This endangers those who use the shelter system,

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BLAC and Partners Question Government on Decision to Share COVID-19 Test Results with Police

Today, the Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) joined with the Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA), Aboriginal Legal Services (ALS), and HIV & AIDS Legal Clinic Ontario (HALCO) to outline our concerns regarding the government’s decision to provide a range of first responders, including police services, with the names, addresses and dates of birth of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.

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