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The implications of denying prisoners pensions

Fear, anger and distraction are great tools for getting your way, particularly in government.

If the opposition asks about detainee torture, accuse them of supporting terrorists. If they want information from your staff, bully your way into a meeting and shout them down ...and if you want to pass law without interference, attack a monster no one will dare to defend.

It hardly matters that with the recent proposed amendment to the Old Age Security Act the pitchforks came out before the bill itself. Prime Minister Stephen Harper learned in March that serial child murderer Clifford Olson was collecting OAS and Guaranteed Income Supplement payments. He was outraged, and ordered that they be stopped.

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Migrant Matters

Criminalization of Indigenous peoples and reproductive justice

July 1, 2014
| Krysta Williams talks about the deliberate overcriminalization process in which the state intervenes in the lives of Indigenous peoples in colonial Canada, touching on reproductive justice issues.
Length: 23:23 minutes (32.13 MB)

Omar Khadr and the Charter of Rights

Image courtesy of Free Omar Khadr Now Campaign

Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms is 32 years old this month. While the Charter's guarantee of protection and equality before the law should be celebrated, we must remain vigilant. Our individual liberty and access to fair treatment before the courts depend on the maintenance of our Charter rights, their universal application and enforcement. Violations of those rights must be remedied or the cherished laws of our Charter only exist as lofty words.

While there are many examples of blatant disregard for protections guaranteed by the Charter and international law, many Canadians agree with Distinguished Professor of Law at University of Ottawa Constance Backhouse that the case of Omar Khadr cries out: 

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| March 7, 2014

Why is Omar Khadr still in jail?

Photo: flickr/4WardEver UK

Do tortured child soldiers belong in Canadian prisons? The fact that Omar Khadr has spent 4254 days in prison, 537 of those days in Canadian detention, should make every Canadian question the essence of our humanity and respect for the rule of law.

Omar's recent transfer from a maximum to a medium-security prison is a hopeful indication that Correctional Service Canada (C.S.C.) is making decisions independent of prejudicial government pressure, but we have to ask ourselves why Omar is still in jail? Unfortunately for Omar, political interference in the judicial process has a disturbing history, and since his repatriation the intervention of right-wing, Islamophobic government officials, foreshadowed an unjust delay or even a complete denial of his freedom.

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Talking Radical Radio

Supporting queer and trans prisoners: The Prisoner Correspondence Project

November 13, 2013
| Melannie Gayle talks about the work of the Toronto chapter of the Prisoner Correspondence Project to support queer and trans inmates from a prison abolitionist perspective.
Length: 28:06 minutes (25.73 MB)
| December 3, 2012
| November 29, 2012
| November 22, 2012
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