January 31, 2015
- This has been an important legal week in Canada. The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled that Canada systematically discriminates against children on reserves, providing far less services and support than they do for other children. After an extended trial, where she faced surveillance and harassment from the Canadian government, Cindy Blackstock and the First Nations Caring Society were successful in their suit against the government, which we hope will lead to a sea change in how Canada relates to its children.
- In less hopeful news, Gregory Alan Elliott was found not guilty of harassing two Toronto women online. This means that there is little legal recourse or protection for people who are harassed or endangered online, because our legal system doesn’t see the internet as real life. However, as Scaachi Koul argues, it would be very wrong to conclude that women ARE safe from harassment and violence in the ‘real world’: “If women react strongly to online harassment, it’s only because it’s just another mutation of what we already know, another version of something we already steel ourselves against when we go outside.”
- “When I entered the sex trade, one of the first things I noticed was the way doctors and nurses would treat me. Much of this wasn’t totally new for me, given my Indigenous status”. Naomi Sayers of Kwe Today writes back to health care stigma in “No, nurse, my health issues aren’t all rooted in my sex work”
- You Would Do Well to Question Your Motives Face/Don’t Stand So Close to Me Face: Alternatives to Resting Bitch Face
- I watched the first episode of Her Story, a new web series about the dating lives of trans and queer women, and I can’t wait to watch the rest, which is all free online. And I can’t stay awake through movies but for those who can: here are 85 films you should watch, all directed by or starring women of colour, and 50 more films by women available online now! Never leave your bed again.
- Do you have cramps? Have you tried putting weed in your vagina?
- On #BellLetsTalk Day, Karen K. Ho wrote a brilliant piece entitled “Let’s talk about how my job at Bell gave me mental health issues and no benefits”:
“Young people, women and people of colour are told they need to suffer the indignities of entry-level positions to “pay their dues,” crying takes place in washrooms or in cars, and low pay with no benefits is often accepted as the cost of entry. For many, casual, contract and hourly work is a necessary stepping stone or means to pay basic bills, especially when layoffs and closures continue to mount.”
- “In four short paragraphs, I laid out what happened. I said I had been irrevocably changed. I said I had tried to press charges but was told it wasn’t a good idea. I said the dynamic of our shared community was flawed, that it prized men over women and consistently placed women in a situation where they had to prove themselves over and over again, enduring a mind-bending combo of soft and hard sexism (if unlucky) and outright invisibility (if lucky). I pointed out that this power imbalance was something he took great advantage of.” How to write to your rapist
- The Digital Transgender Archives are now online.
- “We’re girls, mommy, my daughter tells me, when I ask her what she wants to wear every morning. Girls wear dresses.” ‘She’ is a gorgeous piece in Blunderbuss on embodying motherhood, femininity, and more.
- The Zika virus and its effects are especially frightening in countries with very restricted access to abortion services.
- Don’t blame white guys for publishing’s diversity problem: publishing is an industry driven by white ladies and they need to be accountable for what they choose to represent. Maybe Marley Dias can show them the way.
- Anne Boyer on illness and “emancipatory writing and thinking [as] a collective project” is tender, but also so powerful and necessary.
- Feminist influences on architecture
- “The histories that bring us to feminism are often the histories that leave us fragile. It might be an experience of violence. It might be the gradual realisation that gender requires giving up possibilities you did not know you had; it might be a sense of being wronged or of something being wrong. We often have a sense of things before we can make sense of things.” Sarah Ahmed on feminism and fragility
- People on PEI STILL have no access to abortion services in their own province, and illustrator Karats is “trying to generate conversation on the topic and encourage the Premier and the government to enthusiastically concede the pending court case brought forward by AANPEI and LEAF.” You can donate here to support the organizers of the legal challenge. In solidarity and with hope!
- Reminder: it’s Sunday! What a perfect time to pull together your pitch for our FUTURES issue.
Image by Karats