Maytree blog

These stories highlight what organizations and individuals are doing to reduce poverty and strengthen their communities, as well as how and why they do the work that they do.

Published on 27/09/2019

[Series: Rights-based participation] As part of our series on rights-based participation, we spoke to Wendy Porch, Executive Director of the Centre for Independent Living in Toronto (CILT), about how non-profits and governments can integrate accessibility into their engagement processes.

Rights-based participation emphasizes the leadership of those directly affected by systemic issues and protects their right to be involved in the decision-making that affects their lives. But many community engagement processes and policy consultations still overlook the experiences and expertise of people with disabilities; this is true of both the research conducted to understand the […]

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Published on 26/09/2019

A group of over 60 organizations and individuals are leading a campaign for the City of Toronto to adopt a rights-based approach to housing. Here’s what you need to know.

The City of Toronto could adopt a rights-based approach to housing by the end of the year. With HousingTO 2020-2030 — the City’s next ten-year housing and homelessness plan — in development, a group of over 60 individuals and organizations comprising housing advocates, community health centres, and non-profit organizations are coming together to call on […]

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Published on 22/08/2019

We spoke to street nurse and activist Cathy Crowe about her new memoirs and encouraging people to take action for social change.

“My dream from the age of five was to be a nurse,” writes Cathy Crowe in her new book A Knapsack Full of Dreams: Memoirs of a Street Nurse. Growing up in Cobourg, Ontario, the longtime social justice activist and street nurse learned her earliest lessons about nursing and advocacy from her mother, an emergency […]

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Published on 19/08/2019

[Series: Rights-based participation] Anti-poverty activist and lived expert Bee Lee Soh shares her advice on how governments and non-profits can adopt better practices for the participation of experts with lived/living experience.

For the sixth installment of our blog series on rights-based participation, we interviewed Bee Lee Soh, an active community volunteer and anti-poverty activist with lived/living experience of poverty, who is a member of the City of Toronto’s Poverty Reduction Strategy Lived Experience Advisory Group. From September 2017 to August 2018, Bee was also a member […]

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Published on 11/07/2019

We spoke to 20 educators about what they need to bring human rights into the classroom.

For many of us, the classroom is the first place we hear about human rights. It’s at school that we learn about the right to vote, the right to be treated with dignity, and the right to practice our religions. But how do educators get ready to teach about rights? Earlier this year, I spoke […]

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Published on 19/06/2019

[Series: Rights-based participation] FMTA's Tenant School promotes tenant engagement and organizing by informing tenants of their rights and encouraging collaboration with fellow participants from various walks of life.

Informed participation is key to meaningful engagement in civic processes. When people know their rights and the systems within which they’re engaging, they’re better able to advocate for their rights and organize for social change. In the area of tenant rights, the Federation of Metro Tenants’ Associations (FMTA) has been working to promote informed participation […]

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Published on 21/05/2019

We as a city have the opportunity to be bold with our next ten-year housing and homelessness plan. It’s an opportunity too important to miss.

Not a day seems to go by that we don’t hear about how challenging it is to live in Toronto. Read any newspaper or watch any news broadcast and you’re bound to learn about a young family looking to buy their first home but being unable to break into the market. You might also learn […]

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Published on 15/05/2019

The Journey to Jazz and Human Rights, a radio documentary series produced by Jazz.FM91 and funded by Maytree, focuses on the role of jazz in the fight for human rights.

The Journey to Jazz and Human Rights is a four-part radio documentary series produced by Jazz.FM91 and funded by Maytree. Each episode focuses on the role of jazz in the fight for human rights: Jazz’s role in the fight for civil rights, in economic rights and in women’s rights, and the music’s deployment around the […]

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Published on 30/04/2019

The loss of civility that we witness in the public sphere south of the border seems to have crept north. It's time to break free from the stranglehold of the daily barrage of accusations and refocus on substance in policy.

Whatever happened to the country where substance was considered important? Where serious issues were subject to intelligent discussion, scrutiny and debate? Unfortunately, our public policy conversations recently were hijacked by a daily barrage of accusations. For months, Canadians were held hostage to a never-ending political drama in Ottawa that had little to do with our […]

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