Becoming a Human Rights Ally in Alberta (and Other Risky Practices)
Presented by Darren Lund, Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, University of Calgary
This presentation offers a timely reminder that our work in supporting equality for GLBTTQ and other marginalized communities is not simply about the feel-good pursuit of harmony and acceptance. Moving beyond celebration means mobilizing people to bring about significant social and institutional changes. There are individuals and organizations whose goals run counter to equity, and who spend considerable resources in resisting efforts to support social justice, human rights and diversity. Countering these various forms of backlash is a crucial part of the work we do as activists and allies. Darren has over 20 years of experience working and studying in the field of social justice education, collaboratively organizing an award-winning anti-discrimination group a Red Deer high school in the 1980s, and now working within teacher education and community action groups. In 2007 Darren won a human rights complaint against a “reverend” who published a hateful and homophobic letter to the editor of an Alberta newspaper. Over the years, Darren has faced considerable backlash to his anti-oppression work, including hate mail, a $400,000 nuisance lawsuit, death threats, threatening telephone calls, calls for job action, and other forms of resistance. This presentation explores Darren’s fight for human rights and equality and the personal and professional challenges he has experienced in striving for social justice.
Date: Thursday, 01 April 2010
Location: 7-152 (7th floor) Education North Building, Faculty of Education, University of Alberta