Sept 3, 2023 – Gender shadows…

Sept 3, 2023 – Gender shadows…


The Canadian Press – Stephanie Taylor

Saskatchewan, New Brunswick naming changes means ‘life or death’ for trans kids: – Ian

The debate on gender identification in our schools has perhaps already reached parental panic level for some and is much coloured by political messaging.  What we are likely to miss in the debate over rights are the experiences and well-being of the child, especially the trans-gendered child.  Federal Minister Marcy Ian weighs in in this link in the light of considerable heat but little light coming from New Brunswick and Saskatchewan.   “These policies have a discriminatory impact on trans and gender-diverse students,” said Harini Sivalingam, director of equality programs at the Canadian Civil Liberties Association… For example, a cisgender student who wants to use a nickname doesn’t need to seek parental consent, but a trans student would be required to. So this clearly has a discriminatory effect that will cause harm to trans students.”   Related article:  The Homeless Hub – Promise Busulwa   The Right to Housing in Calgary: A Gender-Focused Discussion with the Federal Housing Advocate   A historic moment in Canada:  “The gendered housing crisis has become so severe that the Federal Housing Advocate (Marie-Josée Houle) now recognizes it as one of the top human rights issues in Canada. To this effect, she recently requested a Human Rights Review on the Government of Canada’s failure to prevent and end homelessness among women and gender-diverse people.”  Related article: The Conversation (Queen’s) – Conor Barker and Patrick Richards   Saskatchewan naming and pronoun policy: The best interests of children must guide provincial parental consent rules


The Canadian Press – Brieanna Charlebois

What happens when you give 50 homeless people $7,500 each? A B.C. study found out what happens when you give homeless people $7,500?

Most discussion about guaranteed annual income or any type of supplement or replacement for the present welfare systems will eventually confront this suspicion:  what will people who get money do with it?  This BC study has a resounding answer for homeless people: they spend it on housing!  “There’s a stark contrast between public perception and the reality of how homeless people spend money, says a researcher who gave 50 homeless people in British Columbia $7,500 each to do with as they wished… Instead of blowing the windfall on “temptation goods”, such as alcohol, drugs or cigarettes, they spent it on rent, clothing and food, the study led by University of British Columbia researcher Jiaying Zhao found…The handout even generated a net saving of almost $800 per recipient, taking into account the costs that would have been involved in providing shelter accommodation.”  Related article: Toronto Star – Sarah Ritchie, The Canadian Press   Almost half of Canadians living paycheque to paycheque as Tory support grows: poll – Poll suggests Tory affordability message hits mark Related article: Vancouver Sun – Nathan Griffiths Give homeless people cash and they spend it on housing, UBC study finds – Study counters public perception that cash would just be spent on drugs and booze, researcher says


CBC News (MB) – Stephanie Cram

Headingley corrections officer’s trial starts Friday for 2021 death of inmate – William Ahmo died after an altercation at Headingley correctional facility in Feb. 2021

“Robert Jeffrey Morden, has been charged with criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide necessities of life related to the death of William Ahmo.”  Added to the distress about the death of the Sagkeeng First Nation 45 year old in the Headingley Provincial Correctional Institute, the mother, Darlene Ahmo, still does not know what happened to her son.   Tweet from John Howard on the death of William Ahmo:  “Important trial to provide transparency about the death of a prisoner post Emergency Response Team involvement + to test legitimate vs. excessive use of lethal force by correctional officers.”   Related article:  CBC News – Brady Strachan  Kelowna RCMP officer who assaulted student during wellness check won’t serve jail time


Tweet from Jeffrey Bradley on Mariame Kaba on Abolition:  “[A]n abolitionist perspective is a positive rather than a negative project. That is, rather than argue that all prisons should be dismantled tomorrow, our task is to crowd out prisons with other forms of justice-making that will eventually demonstrate both the ineffectiveness and the brutality of prisons”   Related tweet: Second Chances Stronger Communities (California) on Sentence Review:  “Sentencing someone to die in prison is unheard of in much of the world, yet it’s common practice in CA. #SB94 by @SenDaveCortese is a common sense reform that would allow judges to review decades old sentences so that LWOP sentences decided in the 70s and 80s could be reviewed.”   Related Editorial Boston Globe (Aug. 27, 2023)  Graying of Massachusetts prisons cries out for a dose of compassion – That starts with increased use of medical parole for those with dementia and Alzheimer’s


Los Angeles Times (US) – Keri Blakinger

California prison guards on track for $1 billion in perks and raises

Here’s an interesting negotiating tool for prison staff:  retention bonus while reducing the number of prisons.  “California prison guards are on track to get more than $1 billion in raises, perks and benefits over the next three years as part of a tentative contract that includes $10,000 bonuses at three hard-to-staff units.”  The California Legislative Analyst Office responsible for oversee and gathering the data can’t find a problem to warrant the bonuses and perks: they “raised concerns about some portions of the proposed agreement, and said data do not clearly support the claim that the state has had any serious problems attracting staff.”  There are about 26,000 guards in total.


The Guardian (UK) – Ed Pilkington in New York

‘Astonishingly cruel’: Alabama seeks to test execution method on death row ‘guinea pig’ Nine months after Kenneth Smith’s botched lethal injection, state attorney general has asked for approval to kill him with nitrogen

This article may offer some insight into the extent of distortion necessary in the death penalty if for no other reason that the extent the state of Alabama will go to inflict the penalty.  Last November, Kenneth Smith’s execution by lethal injection failed, along with two other sentenced to death.  Now, the state has decided to pursue Smith’s execution by pure nitrogen gas, a method will replaces oxygen in the brain until suffocation occurs.  It is also a method that veterinarians reject as too cruel for euthanizing animals.  This decision by Alabama is clearly experimentation using a human person.