THUNDER BAY, ON, Sept. 4, 2012 /CNW/ - Bonnie Couchie reflects tonight on her journey from shock at discriminatory treatment, through filing a human rights application, and victory when the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario ruled in her favour.
At the Learning Café, 510 Victoria Avenue East in Thunder Bay, Ms. Couchie will join visiting board members from the Human Rights Legal Support Centre to talk about her case and the broader issues of discrimination against First Nations and Aboriginal Peoples in Ontario.
The event is co-sponsored by Confederation College and the Human Rights Legal Centre, an organization that provides free legal support to people across Ontario whose human rights under Ontario`s Human Rights Code have been violated.
Ms. Couchie has a Master's Degree focused on Native Studies, decades of experience as an independent workshop facilitator and presenter, and has taught Native Studies at 6 different post-secondary institutions.
Couchie was terminated in what the Tribunal found to be a discriminatory manner. Evaluations from a Ministry session she facilitated included comments such as "all the whining about all the past historical injustices" after which she was terminated. Her non-Aboriginal co-presenter, however, was retained - with the direction that he get some "refresher work."
"As a First Nations person, every aspect of the discriminatory treatment shook me to my very core," says Couchie. "I am glad to have the opportunity to speak about my experiences and the need to address discrimination."
The Board of Directors of the Human Rights Legal Support Centre are holding their fall meeting in Thunder Bay. Refreshments at the event will be provided by local caterer Daisy Wesley.
SOURCE: Human Rights Legal Support Centre
For further information:
For more information or to arrange interviews:
Jennifer Ramsay, Human Rights Legal Support Centre 416-522-5931 (mobile)