Explainer: Equal Bathroom Rights in Canada

Transgender people are publicly banned in the United States from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. In Canada, there are some regional considerations for those individuals to use the bathroom they choose, as well as gender-neutral bathrooms available in some schools and some province and city-owned buildings. In 2016, Bill C-16 was introduced... Continue Reading

Explainer: B.C.’s Fuel Price Transparency Act

Last year, the B.C. provincial government introduced the Fuel Price Transparency Act, which requires gas companies to report their prices for the wholesale gas market.  Gas companies are expected to begin their regular reports to the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) starting this October. The BCUC is an independent agency responsible for regulating B.C.’s natural... Continue Reading

New CPC Leader Erin O’Toole Could Let Down Marginalized Canadians

A former Royal Canadian Air Force officer, lawyer, and Minister of Veterans Affairs in the Harper government, Erin O’Toole has been an MP for Durham, Ontario, since 2012. This month, he was nominated to be the next leader of the Conservative Party of Canada. In his victory speech, O’Toole shared how he plans to lead... Continue Reading

Explainer: The City of Vancouver’s COVID-19 Recovery Plan

The Vancouver City Council COVID-19 Recovery Committee’s final report was unanimously approved earlier this month. The CCRC formed in May to share information about the City’s COVID-19 pandemic response and business and community recovery planning. The report summarizes recommendations from several meetings with experts and stakeholders who shared their advice for how the City can... Continue Reading

Explainer: The Canada-U.S. Border Closure

Earlier in July, the Canada-U.S. border received its fifth extension to remain closed for another 30 days, with exceptions for essential traffic. The border closure prohibits people from travelling between countries for tourism-related activities. Only commercial traffic through railways and trucks, people returning to their home country, essential workers and temporary workers, and immediate family... Continue Reading

Explainer: The Legality of Sex Work in Canada During COVID-19

Sex work and human rights advocates are calling on the federal government to stop enforcing sex work laws during the pandemic. They say enforcing them is creating undue harm and contributing to human rights violations. In late 2014, Bill C-36 was passed in the House of Commons to amend the way in which the Criminal... Continue Reading

Explainer: Canada’s Blood Donation Ban Policy

Advocates for the LGBTQ community are calling for an end to the three-month ban which prevents gay and bisexual men from donating blood. Originally, the ban was implemented in the 1980s during the AIDS epidemic as reports of HIV and AIDS were associated with gay or bisexual men. However, as more cases were reported, people... Continue Reading

Growin’ Your Own Food: Quarantine Edition

Even before the spread of COVID-19 was officially declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, people were buying their groceries in bulk. As countries around the world began announcing social restrictions and business closures, it became clear that going to the grocery store for fresh produce was becoming a higher risk without a guaranteed... Continue Reading

The Gaps in Trudeau’s Gun Policy

Trudeau banned 1,500 models of “assault-style” guns through regulations approved by an order-in-council from Cabinet on May 1. On paper, this looks like a right step towards controlling gun violence in Canada. And although the Liberals promised they would ban “all military-style assault rifles, including the AR-15” in their election campaign last year, it’s not... Continue Reading

The Canadian Government Should Be Enforcing Social Distancing Measures

The COVID-19 global outbreak was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11. Not long after the Canadian federal government placed a ban on social gatherings of more than 50 people, and provinces and territories followed suit with their own restrictions to slow the spread of the virus. By the end of... Continue Reading

Non-medical Essential Workers Need More Protection Against COVID-19

When my partner asked me to be his emergency contact for work, I thought I would never actually get the call. His job is considered essential because his company supplies and distributes food across Canada, and last Wednesday, I got the call. “I’m having trouble breathing,” was the first thing he said to me. “I... Continue Reading

Explainer: What does the Canadian Emergency Student Benefit look like?

Last week Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the Canada Emergency Student Benefit as part of a $9 billion package to help post-secondary students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible post-secondary students receive $1,250 per month from May to August. If eligible students have a disability or are taking care of someone else, they can instead receive... Continue Reading

Explainer: What the Canadian military is doing for Canadians during the pandemic

Emergencies are first handled by local authorities and municipal services such as firefighters, the police and medical professionals, but when first responders are overwhelmed, provinces and territories can request support from the federal government. After the request is approved, the federal government’s response is managed by Public Safety Canada, who may ask the Canadian Armed... Continue Reading

Explainer: Residents of Small B.C. Communities Are Asking Visitors to Stay Away

In response to a recent spike in travel despite the COVID-19 pandemic, MPs from small communities are calling on the provincial and federal government to restrict who can ride BC Ferries during this health crisis. Most of the islands have a median age of over 60 and either limited or no access to medical services.... Continue Reading

The Challenges of Coping With Chronic Illness While Quarantined

If I have learned anything in my short life, it’s to accept the things I can not change. I was ill throughout my adolescence and diagnosed seven years after my first symptoms showed. I was severely nauseous, fatigued, and had constant abdomen and chest pain. At one point, I couldn’t eat, surviving on rice crackers... Continue Reading