law reform

Through law reform and systemic advocacy, we identify anti-Black racism in existing laws and legal systems, and advocate for change.

Our System, Our Children, Our Responsibility

Our System, Our Children, Our Responsibility: A Campaign Against the Deportation of Child Welfare Survivors is a coalition steered by BLAC that seeks to end the deportations of child welfare survivors and to address the related immigration issues.

We demand that the government:

1. Halt all the deportations of child welfare survivors currently facing removal orders;
2. Reinstate the permanent resident status of any/all child welfare survivors;
3. Develop a clear and accessible pathway to citizenship for all child welfare survivors.

Click here to read the letter the coalition sent to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the Minister of Public Safety, and the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion regarding immigration removals and anti-Black racism. 

Click here to read about the Public Policy we requested the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship to create.

 

Fresh Start Coalition

As a member of the Fresh Start CoalitionBLAC is working alongside 85+ other civil society organizations to change the law so people can move beyond their old criminal records.

We are advocating for the federal government  change Canada’s record suspension system and revamp the way Canada deals with old criminal records. The coalition is calling on the federal government to implement a ‘spent’ regime, which would automatically seal a person’s criminal record if they have successfully completed their sentence and lived in the community without further criminal convictions.

Black communities are disproportionately affected by the criminal justice system. Adopting a spent regime will promote reintegration, workforce participation, and improve community safety. 

More information

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

Alongside Colour of Poverty – Colour of Change (COP-COC) and others, BLAC made a joint submission on the fifth and sixth periodic reports of Canada under the Convention on the Rights of the Child

It focuses on issues facing racialized communities, immigrants, refugees and migrants in Canada. In consultation and continued solidarity with organizations serving Indigenous communities, this report also addresses a number of issues disproportionately and uniquely faced by Indigenous communities.

Many of the issues highlighted in this report were never addressed by the Canadian Government in its previous reports. To the extent that they were addressed, the Government of Canada has either not accepted the recommendation or has not acted on them. Some of these issues continue to remain unresolved since the Committee’s 2003 review of Canada during its thirty-fourth session.

Read the joint submission here.

Bill C-5 – An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act

BLAC, the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF) and the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies (CAEFS) urge Parliament to:

  • amend Bill C-5 to remove all mandatory minimums,
  • remove the ban on conditional sentences for offences with a mandatory minimum penalty
  • allow trial judges to depart from mandatory minimum sentences and restrictions on the use of conditional sentences
  • amend s. 718.2(e) of the Criminal Code to include specific reference to Black defendants
  • fully decriminalize simple drug possession, and provide automatic expungement of criminal records for simple drug possession

Read our full submissions here or a summary of our submissions here.