At what point does racism move from isolated incidents to a systemic problem in the Canadian Forces? Master Corporal Marc Frenette is quitting his decades-long service after years of racial harassment. Last May, Corporal Esther Wolki went public over the racial abuse she suffered and the damage it did to her mind. Not even the defence minister is immune from racist attacks. Then there's Private Wallace Fowler. For 16 years he has been trying to get the Forces to properly investigate the racism he says he endured.
The Trudeau government seemingly called off the CRA from harassing Canada's charities on January 20. Well, not really, in fact. The Trudeau government's timidity so far in fixing this abuse of power by the previous government will probably result in some of Canada's most popular and important charities heading toward decertification and oblivion.
Ontario's Human Rights Code protects people from discrimination based on characteristics like race, age, gender identity, and sex in situations like the provision of services, housing, and employment. People are also protected from discrimination based on their creed. The term "creed" isn't defined in the legislation, but until recently, it was thought to mean the same thing as religion. That is, until now.
I was concerned about Kate and I met with her in person. When she told me what was going on at her firm, it became clear that there was an element of sexual discrimination or harassment. Articling students facing such harassment have few choices. They could make a complaint to the Law Society, file a complaint under the firm's internal workplace harassment policy (assuming it exists), consult an employment lawyer or perhaps bring a human rights complaint. The power dynamics of articling make such options not particularly appealing to most students. So most would stick it out.
We continue to hear from victims of harassment in the RCMP. They tell us that the current complaints system is broken; and that there is little accountability for breaches of policy. The stories we hear are powerful reminders of a broken system. This is Deanna's story, it is one of many: "In January 2004, while on duty, I suffered a hearing loss as a result of several shotgun blasts. My operational career ended abruptly once it was determined that my hearing loss was so significant that I could no longer perform my operational duties. When I was deemed no longer 'useful' was when the harassment began by my detachment commander."
You may have noticed variations of the term "online trolling" creeping their way into the style guides of your favourite news outlets over the past year. What the Internet need not attempt is to expunge trolls. Instead, the digital class must work towards a renegotiation of its idioms. A key part of this process will be coaxing more nuance from terms like trolls and trolling, insisting on new ways of delineating the undesirable from the criminal: the process from the by-product. Resist the rush to concede the perch of the troll; it's all many of us have left.
There are many cases of privacy violation at Veterans Affairs. Those that have gone public have two things in common: they have all spoken out about VAC policy and they are all veterans. Some can prove the Minister was given their information. Some can only prove that Ministerial staff was reading their files. Why is this happening?