In the Blog

Mid-Week Round Up: March 5

March 5th, 2015     by Ronak Ghorbani     Comments

Illustration: Erin McPhee

This Sunday is March 8th, International Women’s Day (IWD). Writing for Harsha Walia re-imagines feminism on IWD:

“The greatest transformative potentials of feminism lie in the valuing of relational work that sustains our communities and manifests our responsibilities to each other: care work, land stewardship, and emotional labour.”

Events for IWD are being held across Canada. Click here to find an event near you.

BuzzFeed has published a list of 15 books by Transgender women we should all read. The list includes everything from sci-fi to cookbooks.

It’s the 30th anniversary of Whitney Houston’s debut album and to celebrate the occasion Red Bull Music interviewed two of the album’s music producers. Reflecting on the experience one of the producers, Narada Michael Walden, said:

“Whitney was just so confident and happy. I realized I was really dealing with a brand new model of sound and energy for the future of music, and it was Whitney Houston.”

Teaching Assistants at the University of Toronto and Teaching Assistants, Contract Faculty, and Graduate Assistants at York University* are on strike. In an article written for The Globe and Mail Zane Schwartz, a fourth-year student at the University of Toronto, outlines how the strikes are about much more than wage increases, they’re also about job security:

“Teaching Assistants at York University and the University of Toronto are on strike. At first glance these seem like classic labour disputes, but they are a warning of how fundamentally flawed the Canadian university system has become.”

As CBC reports, today most university undergraduate students are taught by poorly paid part-time contract faculty.

In New Brunswick members of Fredericton Youth Feminists are continuing their months-long fight against the dress code at their high school arguing that it doesn’t address the real problem of sexual harassment.

Last week a Quebec judge asked a hijab-wearing Muslim woman, Rania El-Alloul who was in court to apply for the return of a vehicle, why she was wearing a scarf. The judge told her if she didn’t take off her scarf case would not be heard. In response to the judge’s blatant discrimination the online campaign #SuitablyDressed has launched.
Writing for the Toronto Star, Amna Qureshi a staff lawyer with Legal Aid Alberta who also wears the hijab, outlines the critical problems with the Quebec judge’s actions:

“Every day I stand in a courtroom and represent people who cannot afford private counsel and who face many other barriers to accessing justice. What happened in Judge Marengo’s courtroom on last week was the antithesis of access to justice.

There are dozens of Muslim women who practice law in this country wearing a hijab. They are educated, leaders within their communities, and contribute greatly to Canada. If any of us were told we were not suitably dressed for court while wearing our hijabs, we would be forced to give up our careers.

I sincerely hope that Judge Marengo realizes the error in her decision, reverses her decision and offers an apology to Ms. El-Alloul.”

The documentary What Happened, Miss Simone about legendary singer and civil rights activist Nina Simone will be released on Netflix on June 26.

*Ronak Ghorbani is a Teaching Assistant and Course Director currently on strike at York University

Tags: activist report, gender, media savvy, news flash, race and racism, school, youth

« Mid-Week Round Up: February 25

American Horror Story: Ableism, Voyeurism and Popular Culture »