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Mariah Griffin-Angus

Human Rights Activist

Mariah Griffin-Angus is from Cobalt (Northern Ontario) and is a Canadian human rights activist and policy analyst with an interest in gender and transitional justice.

Previously, Mariah lived in Rwanda, Uganda and the United Kingdom. She attended Carleton University’s Arthur Kroeger College for her Bachelors and pursued her Masters at the University of Bristol.

Mariah is a winner of the Ontario Council of International Cooperation's Global Changemaker Award of 2013.

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Shutterstock / HamsterMan

Your Drug Addiction Is Costing Poor People Their Lives

People sure love their drugs. There are high costs, however, for this international appetite for drugs. And it's usually the poor and disenfranchised who pay these costs. The cost of the global appetite for drugs is high and the burden is disproportionately felt by the poor. It's the man who passes out in front of my apartment on a weekly basis. It's the victims of beheadings in Mexico. It's the families left impoverished while a small, violent elite makes millions. Drugs aren't cool. Or edgy. This is supply and demand at its most brutal and the poor are the ones paying the price.
04/22/2014 05:54 EDT
OLN

'Storage Wars' Forgets to Acknowledge the Class War

Storage Wars, and its regional counterpart Storage Wars Texas, have made a killing off showing off the unsavoury, grimy side of failed capitalism: buying the contents of abandoned storage lockers in the hope of making a cheap buck. The mediocre aspirations of the show are depressing enough but the lack of class analysis is even more depressing.
02/15/2014 08:07 EST
Alamy

For Native Women, the Highway of Tears Cuts Right Across Canada

Cutting through northern British Columbia is a notorious stretch of highway. Along what is now widely known as the Highway of Tears, a staggering number of First Nation women have been murdered or gone missing. For many First Nations women, however, the Highway of Tears just keeps going, shearing its way across the country through our small towns and inner cities, bringing with it sexual exploitation and violence. Some 130 years later, the Highway still pushes itself mercilessly from the west coast, then across the Prairies, to run the length of this country. The problem cuts to the very core of Canada's long standing, abusive relationship with First Nation people.
12/03/2013 12:31 EST
AP

The Streets Are No Place for the Mentally Ill

I see him everyday, standing out in the street in the heat or the cold fighting ghosts in his head. All too often in Canada, the street or the emergency ward has become the place where those with severe mental illnesses end up. Those with mental illnesses make up a disturbing percentage of the homeless.
09/05/2013 12:20 EDT
Getty Images

Where Do the Homeless Flee in a Flood?

The recent flooding in Toronto has exposed much of the City's unpreparedness for a serious disaster. But what has been left out of the public debate on aging infrastructure, road closures and flooded subways is what happens to those who live on the streets?
07/15/2013 01:53 EDT
Getty

Why Young Blood in Politics is a Good Idea

The issue of age recently exploded in the Ugandan media when a 19-year-old woman won a by-election in Usuk, Uganda. How could someone so young, so inexperienced, adequately represent her constituents? In Uganda, as in Canada, the youth are the ones bearing the brunt of the global economic crisis, and yet are facing constant criticism for being entitled for wanting a good education and decent jobs. They have a right to be represented and heard.
09/20/2012 12:16 EDT
Alamy

The Torture Chambers That Spoil Uganda's 50th Birthday

In Nyamata, a small, dusty town in southern Rwanda, there lies a tidy, red brick church. Its walls are riddled with bullet holes. The interior holds bloody smears on the floor, torn clothing neatly piled on benches, and rows of bones. But Idi Amin's torture chambers are something different altogether.
09/07/2012 05:24 EDT
Getty File

Unless we Can Stop the Ivory Hunt, Say Goodbye to Rhinos

The rhino has been around for 50-million years. It has only taken the past 40 years to eradicate 90 per cent of them. It's hard to believe an elephant tusk or rhino's horn can fetch as much as $1-million USD on the black market, but soon there won't be any ivory left to harvest.
08/30/2012 12:07 EDT
Flickr: torbakhopper

In Uganda, Gay Rights Activists Fight Back

Small acts of courage by gay rights activists in Uganda are taking place against a backdrop of virulent hatred and fear. The country's tabloids, most notably Rolling Stone (not affiliated with the music magazine) and Red Pepper, thrive on spreading messages of hysteria with regards to the 'gay epidemic'. Rolling Stone published a list of 100 'homos' and called for them to be hanged. David Kato, a prominent Ugandan gay rights activist, was one on the list and he was brutally beaten to death with a hammer shortly after.
08/21/2012 05:28 EDT

The New Terror Stalking Ugandans

Recently, physical contact was banned in Uganda. The re-emergence of Ebola, with two cases discovered in Kampala, has sparked fear in the country. And little wonder. It's a disease that could have been created by writers of a Hollywood horror movie -- a communicable disease that often causes fever, bleeding and death. But there is another disease stalking Uganda that doesn't fit the traditional images of outbreak and disease. And it's coming for the children.
08/03/2012 07:47 EDT
Lucy Young, Evening Standard / ZUMA Press

In Ugandan Nightclubs, There are No Rules

Nowhere are the contradictions of Uganda more readily apparent than in the nightclubs on any given evening. Uganda is a fairly conservative society; public displays of affection are frowned upon in public, and women often wear modest clothing. When the clubs open, the rules change. The hemlines become shorter and shirts a bit tighter.
07/25/2012 05:05 EDT

Karamoja: Land of the Cattle Rustlers

Welcome to Karamoja, land of the cattle rustlers.Karamoja is the most isolated region in Uganda, bordering South Sudan and Kenya. Soldiers from the Ugandan Military patrolled the streets with heavy machine guns; billboards implored warriors to "Put down the gun and get an education."
07/18/2012 08:23 EDT
AP

Miners in the Heart of Darkness

In the Congo, a small town called Bunagana is falling to rebel troops. This led to 600 government soldiers and thousands of refugees fleeing into Uganda. What does this have to do with Canada? Everything. The DRC is the stage of a violent and bloody conflict that is being fueled by a rush for resource exploitation. The conflict may seem far away but Canada is right in the heart of it all.
07/09/2012 05:10 EDT
CP/Getty

Forget About Landslide Election Results: These Landslides Kill Children

It is a terrible irony that in order to eke out a living, Ugandan villagers must farm Mount Elgon to the point where it threatens their survival. The loss of their land, and the destruction of the environment have put them at the mercy of forces beyond their control. As climate change places increasing pressures on the Third World such tragedies will become the norm.
07/03/2012 04:24 EDT
CP/Getty

Why Sending Your Old Clothes to Africa Doesn't Help

Aid and development are deeply complex and there are no easy answers. The physical donations of goods, be it food or clothes, often have negative impacts on the local economy. It would be far better for aid organizations to buy products locally. Aid shouldn't be about making North Americans comfortable with a culture of mass consumption and waste. It has to be actually making the lives of people in the recipient country better.
06/25/2012 05:05 EDT
AP

There's Nothing "Extremist" About Banning Plastic Bags

Recently, Toronto City Council did something that Mayor Rob Ford deemed "ludicrous and dangerous": They banned plastic bags. Yet, while commentators such as the Globe and Mail's Margaret Wente decried the ban as the "new puritan cause," African countries have been out front on this issue for years.
06/18/2012 01:01 EDT

Ugandans Are Sticking it To the Man For Women's Rights

People were shocked by the photographs that show Ugandan police brutally grabbing Ingrid Turinawe's breasts as she cried out in pain. Sexual assault is a public taboo in this deeply conservative country. However, the very public and sexualized nature of the attack on Turinawe seems to have been a defining moment for the women's movement of Uganda.
06/12/2012 05:15 EDT