SFP: Reviving Public Science in Canada, Nov 29, 5:30, MedSci

Critical Condition: Reviving Public Science in Canadawill take place on Nov. 29, 2013, from 5:30-7:30. 
JR McLeod Auditorium, MedSCi

Come to an event celebrating the life of three scientific organizations that died and one that was resuscitated, and help us brainstorm about ways to revive public science in Canada.

Dr. Paul Cappon, the former President of the Canadian Council of Learning (2004-2012) will talk about the Council’s birth and untimely death. The Council studied and fostered ways in which Canadians were learning in school, at home, in the workplace and in their community, throughout their life cycle.

Dr. Robert Page, former Chair of the
National Round Table on Environment & Economy (1988-2013), will discuss the life and death of the Roundtable and its valuable contributions to our understanding of the links between the environment and the economy – now more needed than ever! It researched and advocated a low carbon economy and argued that Canada was well positioned to achieve this goal. However, its advice was not appreciated, which led to its demise.

Dr. Peter Ross, former senior research with the Ocean Pollution Research Program will talk about "Ocean pollution science in Canada: Navigating without a compass” – the outcome of terminating a program within the Department of Fisheries and Oceans that led to many important regulations and controls improving commercial and traditional seafoods by lowering levels of various chemicals in marine wildlife. It improved the health of several fish and marine mammal populations. Sadly, the program itself died in 2013.

Dr. Diane Orihel, founder of Save ELA, will discuss the death of the world-renowned Experimental Lakes Area and its miraculous resuscitation through Ontario – find out why it is still in critical condition on life support, unable to rise from its bed of suffering. During its healthy life, the ELA influenced public policy in water management in Canada, the USA and Europe.

The talks will be followed by a Q and A period, and we will then brainstorm together what can be done to Revive Public Science in Canada.

This event is organized by Scientists for the Right to Know, the University of Toronto Faculty Association, the Graduate Students’ Union of the University of Toronto, the York University Faculty Association and Save ELA.

Admission is free.
Please come and circulate the information as widely as possible among your networks.

Take action for human rights | Amnesty International Canada: Indigenopous Rights

Take action for human rights | Amnesty International Canada


Urge Canada to help safeguard the human rights of Indigenous peoples affected by resource development projects at home and abroad.  Indigenous peoples have the right to make their own decisions about how and when their lands and resources will be used and developed.

This right of free, prior and informed consent or FPIC provides a vital safeguard for distinctive cultures and ways of life that have long been marginalized and discriminated against.
The right of FPIC is set out in numerous provisions of the 2007 United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and in countless rulings and statements from international human rights bodies. The standard has been adopted by the International Financial Corporation – the arm of the World Bank responsible for private sector investment -  and endorsed by leading sectors of global industry.
However, the government of Canada acts as though the right doesn’t even exist. This is a significant problem for the realization and protection of human rights because Canada is at the center of a global push to exploit the resources of Indigenous peoples' lands.
Canada’s Economic Action Plan is intended to support an estimated 600 new large-scale resource development projects across Canada in the next decade, many of which will impact the lands and territories of Indigenous peoples. At the same time, through trade agreements and direct support to corporations, the federal government is promoting rapid expansion of mining, oil and gas, and other extractive industries around the world – including in countries like Colombia and Guatemala where there is widespread and brutal violations of the rights of Indigenous peoples.


Cases | Amnesty International Canada: Write for Rights, Dec 10

Cases | Amnesty International Canada

Write with hundreds of thousands of human rights supporters

On December 10, let the letter-writing marathon begin! Amnesty supporters in 80 countries around the world will be participating in what has become the world’s biggest letter-writing event. Together our collective action on these priority cases will put massive pressure on governments to respond positively to our plea to improve human rights.
Each year Amnesty selects human rights cases for Write for Rights. Follow the links below to read case details, download printable case sheets for your letter writing, and take action. Letter-writing tips, event resources, slideshows and more are located on the resources page.


HAT MONTHLY MEETING: Sat. Nov 9, 1:30pm "Natural Burial"

HAT MONTHLY MEETING: Sat. Nov 9, 1:30pm "Natural Burial"
Date: Saturday, November 9, 2013
Time: 1:30 – 3 pm
Location: OISE, 252 Bloor west, Room tbd
Topic: “Natural Burial: A ‘New’ Old Concept of Burial”
Speaker: Bob Hope, a member of the Natural Burial Association
Natural Burial is a “new” old concept of burial. In 2008, Victoria BC was the first city in Canada to offer it as a choice and interest has been growing since.
Natural burial methods are designed to return the body to the earth without inhibiting the natural process of decomposition, leading to a sustainable burial process with little environmental impact.  Different from conventional cemeteries, a natural burial site (also known as a woodland cemetery) is managed for the benefit of wildlife and is planted to encourage a diverse range of flora and fauna.  In this way, natural burial grounds actively contribute to the protection and creation of forests and parklands.
Bob Hope is an Owen Sound, Ontario resident and member of the Natural Burial Association, a Canadian non-profit organization. Bob has studied the issues of conventional burial and cremation as well as the benefits of natural burial when  compared to other forms of interment or cremation. This presentation concludes that it is time for Natural Burial to become an important alternative choice for environmentally conscious citizens.