Category Archives: Advocacy

Open letter to Minister of Justice: stop enforcing sex work laws immediately

July 23, 2020 The Hon. David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Dear Minister Lametti: In 2014, the federal government passed the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act (S.C. 2014, c. 25), criminalizing all facets of sex work, including selling sex in a public space, purchasing sex in all spaces, all material benefits from […]

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The Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act: The Good, the Bad, and the Ineffective

In Canada, people who use drugs are dying in record numbers. Between January 2016 and September 2019, more than 14,700 people died of apparent opioid overdoses in this country. In Ontario alone, more than 1450 people died from opioid-related causes in 2018. The overwhelming majority of these overdoses and deaths involve fentanyl or its analogues, […]

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Submission to Edmonton City Council: reject the proposal to permanently close Edmonton’s Body Rub Centres

In March 2020, Body Rub Centres in Edmonton were closed pursuant to a State of Local Emergency Order, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On April 27, 2020, Edmonton City Councillor Jon Dziadyk stated he wants to explore options for accelerating the permanent closure of Body Rub Centres in the next annual update, given that the Centres are currently […]

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Submission to the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants on the Rights to Freedom of Association of Migrants

We make this submission to the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, Mr. Felipe González Morales, to describe laws and policies that inhibit migrant sex workers and other marginalized communities from enjoying their right to freedom of association, as well as concrete steps that States, international organizations and the UN can take […]

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Federal Election 2019

On October 21, 2019, Canadians will head to the polls for a federal election. This is our chance to decide what kind of government we want — and at the Legal Network we’re hoping for one that upholds and actively promotes health and human rights. On this page you’ll find resources related to the election […]

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Joint written statement on Violations of The Right to Life in The Context of Drug Control

Harm Reduction International and supporting organisations wish to congratulate the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions for her latest report, and for her ongoing efforts to highlight and address heinous violations of fundamental rights committed in the context of drug control. While countries are increasingly recognising drugs as a primarily health-related issue, we […]

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Joint written statement on The Disproportionate Impact of The Death Penalty for Drug Offences on Foreign Nationals

Harm Reduction International (HRI) and supporting organisations welcome the report by the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, and wish to take this opportunity to comment on the disproportionate impact of the criminal justice response to drugs on foreign nationals, including migrant women, in countries that retain the death penalty for drug offences. […]

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Joint written statement on Limitations to Judicial Independence in The Context of Drug Control

Harm Reduction International and supporting organisations welcome the Report by the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, as well as his March 2019 statement (co-authored with the Special Rapporteur on the right to health) on drug courts; which warned against the dangers of drug courts as manifestations of the abuse of the […]

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Joint written statement on Protecting and Promoting the Health of People Who Use Drugs

Harm Reduction International (HRI) and supporting organisations welcome the report of the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health on promoting mental health through a holistic approach, and the attention paid to underlying determinants, the impact of discrimination, and the need to […]

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Report to OHCHR on “human rights in the administration of justice”

Introduction People who use drugs retain their fundamental rights, including the right to health and including in detention settings, and States have a heightened, positive obligation to protect those most vulnerable, and/or under their direct control. Regrettably, the criminalisation of drug use and drug possession for personal use, in the context of repressive drug policies, […]

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