Topics we’ll cover include:
- Feminist Law Reform [FLR]: What is it and how to get involved?
- Who to influence and how?
- The federal law reform process
- How to write parliamentary briefs, petitions and other key tools
- How to draft a thesis statement for a brief/Op-ed writing skills
- How to work in coalitions to achieve substantive equality
- How to lobby Members of Parliament or Senators
- Using social media for feminist advocacy and activism
Do you want to organise or host a Feminist Law Reform Workshop?
- Whitehorse, Yukon: September 28-29, 2022
- Fredericton, New Brunswick: October 21-22, 2022 (to be confirmed)
- Quebec City, Quebec: November 10 – 11, 2022 (to be confirmed)
- Calgary, Alberta: January 13 – 14, 2023 (to be confirmed)
Subscribe to be informed on any new workshops.
Our Past Workshops
Feminist Law Reform Workshops in Quebec City
November 11-12, 2022
In November 2022, we were pleased to host two feminist law reform workshops at Université Laval. These workshops were made possible thanks to funding from the Chambre des notaires and Women and Gender Equality Canada, and through a partnership with COMRADES.
The mission of the Chambre des notaires is to protect the public through current, quality notarial practice. The notarial profession financially supports collective initiatives that encourage the development of a vibrant and accessible legal society for the people of Quebec. Click here to find out more. With so much information circulating, the notary is a key player in helping the public find their way around, make better choices, protect their assets, and ensure that their wishes are known and respected. Click here to find a notary.
Part 1: #EarthNeedsFeminism workshop
The #EarthNeedsFeminism workshop took place on November 11 from 4.45pm to 7.45pm. During the workshop, participants were able to attend a lecture by Dr Sabaa Khan, Chair of NAWL’s Women’s Rights & the Climate Crisis working group and member of NAWL’s National Steering Committee. Simultaneous interpretation in Quebec Sign Language was provided at the event, enabling two Deaf participants to attend. Participants also carried out interactive activities on feminist climate justice, including the production of photos and videos sharing why “Earth Needs Feminism”.
Part 2: Feminist Law Reform workshop
During this one-day workshop, participants heard presentations from several exceptional speakers, including Martha Jackman, Mélanie Lemay, Julia Tétrault-Provencher, Alexandra Dupuy and Nellie Brière. A variety of topics were covered, including how to use international law as a lever for change, how to use social media to campaign for feminist law reform, and how to write effective op-eds and briefs.
Feminist Law Reform Workshop in Whitehorse, Yukon
September 28-29, 2022
NAWL had the pleasure of holding two feminist law reform workshops in Whitehorse, Yukon, in September 2022.
The goal of these workshops is to foster the development of skills related to the advancement of a feminist law reform and to raise awareness about the importance and necessity of this reform among future generations of lawyers, social justice advocates and activists from the women’s sector.
The attendees had the opportunity to learn from incredible speakers who are leaders in their fields.
Part 1: Campaign Creation Workshop
Participants attended a presentation on feminist climate action by Madeline Tater and Aleah McCormick, two law students interning with NAWL. Afterwards, participants engaged in interactive activities related to this topic. Using a workbook created by NAWL, they created signs, photos and videos on the theme "Feminist Climate Action Now!” and discussed coalition-building strategies as well as the effective use of social media to advocate for feminist law reform.
Part 2: Feminist Law Reform Workshop
Several outstanding speakers gave presentations at this workshop, including Martha Jackman, Pamela Cross, City Councillor Michelle Friesen, Emily Tredger, Lesley McCullough, Deirdre O'Beirne-Røsæg and MP Brendan Hanley. Workshop topics included writing legal briefs and op-eds, an introduction to feminist law reform and advice on how to interact with MPs. We were also honoured to welcome Elder Betsy Jackson, who started the workshop with an opening prayer.
Workshops at the Law Needs Feminism Because Forum in Halifax
The first workshop was designed to provide feminist law students with the confidence and tools to contribute their expertise to the public discourse on feminist law reform issues. Participants received skills based training and hands-on support from Informed Opinions to strengthen their capacities to write compelling, short-form written commentary for newspaper op-ed pages and online sites on equality rights issues, with a specific focus on the right to abortion in Canada, the Canada Summer Jobs Program Attestation, and the government’s legal obligation to protect and promote women’s equality rights.
The second workshop was on how to use social media for feminist advocacy and activism. The workshop was led by Paula Ethans—a young feminist and recent law school graduate who had completed the University of Ottawa Feminist Law Reform course in 2018.
Feminist Law Reform Workshop in Vancouver
- Atira Women's Resource Society
- Battered Women's Support Services (BWSS)
- Boundary Women's Transition House
- CHIMO Community Services
- Dixon Transition House
- Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society
- MOSAIC BC
- Rise Women's Legal Centre
- Snxlhh Transition House
- Surrey Women's Centre
- Vancouver Aboriginal Transformative Justice Services Society (VATJSS)
- WAVAW Rape Crisis Centre
Feminist Law Reform Workshop in Toronto
- Canadian Council of Muslim Women (CCMW)
- Canadian Women's Foundation
- International Women's Rights Project (IWRP)
- Luke's Place
- Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children (METRAC)
- Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI)
- South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario (SALCO)
- Women's Habitat of Etobicoke
- YWCA Canada
Feminist Law Reform Workshop in Montreal
An introductory workshop on feminist law reform at the federal level was held in Montreal at McGill University. This workshop was facilitated in French and focused on violence against women in the context of family law, specifically divorce.
The morning session of the workshop, which presented an introduction to feminist law reform, was facilitated by: NAWL’s new Project Director, Rachel Kohut;1In June 2019, Suki Beavers (the former Project Director) became NAWL’s Executive Director and Rachel Kohut was hired as the new Project Director. NAWL Co-Chairs, Anne Levesque and Martha Jackman; and Souhila Baba, who had participated in the introduction to FLR workshops previously convened by NAWL in Halifax in February 2019. The afternoon session, which focused on strengthening advocacy skills by writing op eds, was facilitated by Maïka Sondarjee and Laura Shine from Informed Opinions.
At this workshop, Mathilde Trou and Louise Riendeau (Regroupement des maisons pour femmes victimes de violence), Marie-Hélène Senay (Fédération des maisons d’hébérgement pour femmes) and Karine-Myrgianie Jean-François (DisAbled Women’s Network Canada) — who participated in the Bill C-78 coalition led by NAWL and Luke’s Place — shared their respective experiences engaging in feminist law reform at the federal level.
- Collectif des femmes immigrantes du Québec (CFIQ)
- Comité des femmes et droit (Université de Montréal)
- DisAbled Women's Network Canada (DAWN-RAFH)
- Fédération des femmes du Québec (FFQ)
- Fédération des maisons d'hébérgement pour femmes
- Law Needs Feminism Because
- Le comité féministe de l'Association générale des étudiant.e.s en droit (AGED) de la Faculté de droit de l'Université de Sherbrooke
- Regroupement des maisons pour femmes victimes de violence
- Le Y des femmes de Montréal (YWCA Montréal)
- Réseau d'action pour l'égalité des femmes immigrées et racisées du Québec (RAFIQ)
Feminist Law Reform Workshop in Ottawa
Representatives of thirteen national feminist and equality seeking organizations and allies participated in an introductory workshop on feminist law reform convened at the University of Ottawa.
The morning session of the workshop, which presented an introduction to feminist law reform, was facilitated by: NAWL’s Executive Director, Suki Beavers; NAWL Project Director, Rachel Kohut; NAWL Project Partner and Advisory Board member, Pam Cross; and Souhila Baba (who had participated in the Feminist Law Reform Workshop previously convened in Halifax). The afternoon session of the workshop, which focused on strengthening advocacy skills by writing op-eds, was facilitated by Shari Graydon, founder of Informed Opinions.
- Amnesty International Canada
- Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies (CAEFS)
- Canadian Council of Muslim Women (CCMW)
- Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action (FAFIA)
- Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW)
- Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW)
- Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) National
- Canadian Women's Foundation (CWF)
- Egale Canada Human Rights Trust
- The Refugee Hub
- Women's Shelters Canada
- Women of the Métis Nation (Les Femmes Michif Otipemisiwak)
- YWCA Canada