An Indigenous Abolitionist Study Guide - Yellowhead Institute. On August 10, 1975, the first Prisoners’ Justice Day (PJD) took place at Millhaven Penitentiary in Bath, Ontario, in commemoration of Eddie Nalon, who took his own life one year earlier while incarcerated.
Every year since, prisoners throughout so-called Canada (as well as internationally) have engaged in day-long fasts and labour strikes to call attention to the lethal effects of the prison system and to honour those who have died. PJD provides us with an opportunity to reflect upon and act in resistance to the inherent violence of prisons and the penal apparatus (i.e., police, social workers, etc.), and to interrogate the colonial logics of containment and control that underpin this apparatus. In settler states such as Canada, the justice system is an integral component of settler colonial warfare against Indigenous peoples.
As Ojibwe Elder Art Solomon explains, “We were not perfect, but we had no jails… no old peoples’ homes, no children’s aid societies, we had no crisis centres. The history of British slave ownership has been buried: now its scale can be revealed. The past has a disconcerting habit of bursting, uninvited and unwelcome, into the present.
This year history gate-crashed modern America in the form of a 150-year-old document: a few sheets of paper that compelled Hollywood actor Ben Affleck to issue a public apology and forced the highly regarded US public service broadcaster PBS to launch an internal investigation. The document, which emerged during the production of Finding Your Roots, a celebrity genealogy show, is neither unique nor unusual. It is one of thousands that record the primal wound of the American republic – slavery. It lists the names of 24 slaves, men and women, who in 1858 were owned by Benjamin L Cole, Affleck’s great-great-great-grandfather. When this uncomfortable fact came to light, Affleck asked the show’s producers to conceal his family’s links to slavery. It was precisely because slaves were reduced to property that they appear so regularly in historic documents, both in the US and in Britain. Was there slavery in Australia? Yes. It shouldn't even be up for debate.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison asserted in a radio interview that “there was no slavery in Australia”.
This is a common misunderstanding which often obscures our nation’s history of exploitation of First Nations people and Pacific Islanders. Morrison followed up with “I’ve always said we’ve got to be honest about our history”. Unfortunately, his statement is at odds with the historical record. This history was widely and publicly documented, among other sources, in the 2006 Australian Senate report Unfinished Business: Indigenous Stolen Wages. What is slavery? Australia was not a “slave state” like the American South. Slavery is the status or condition of a person over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised.
These powers might include non-payment of wages, physical or sexual abuse, controls over freedom of movement, or selling a person like a piece of property. How to Safely and Ethically Film Police Misconduct. On one of the first warm spring weekends in New York City, photos and videos circulated on social media featuring police officers handing out masks to groups of mostly white residents lounging in city parks.
That same weekend, videos of police officers — some of whom weren’t wearing protective gear — using excessive force to arrest Black and Brown civilians for allegedly violating social distancing guidelines also circulated online. Videos, filmed by bystanders and community members, are helping to illuminate this new iteration of racist policing during COVID-19. Over the past six years we’ve seen how critical video documentation can be in exposing violent and discriminatory policing, galvanizing public support around calls for accountability, and on rare occasions, even helping to secure justice in a courtroom. But far too often videos of police violence don’t lead to convictions, despite what appears to be clear evidence of abuse. Human Rights Video. Students Learn A Powerful Lesson About Privilege. Indigenous Cultures. Did They Really Just Say That?! Being an Active Bystander.
Thank you for your commitment to challenging explicit and implicit biases in your professional role and day-to-day life!
It can be difficult to know what to say when a family member, friend, colleague, or acquaintance makes problematic comments. However, we will only be able to dismantle racism in its overt forms if we are brave enough to challenge racism in even its most common forms. The Kirwan Institute invites you to utilize the strategies and resources on this page to empower yourself to speak out in response to biased comments. In the words of Audre Lorde, “When we speak we are afraid our words will not be heard or welcomed. But when we are silent, we are still afraid. Active Bystander Training Have you ever been in a conversation when someone said something biased that made you uncomfortable, but you were not sure how to respond?
Archive - Margaret Thatcher: From MP to PM - Women in Politics.