Equity, human rights and accessibility awards handed out
By Communications Staff
The Human Rights and Equity Office along with the Council on Employment Equity hosted an awards ceremony on March 5 to recognize members of the university community for their work advancing human rights, equity and accessibility at Queen’s.
“An inclusive community, one where a diverse population is able to thrive and participate fully, doesn’t happen by accident. We all have a role to play to ensure successful learning, living and employment outcomes,” says Irène Bujara, director of the Human Rights Office at Queen’s. “The groups and individuals we honour today have made remarkable contributions to the advancement of equity, human rights and accessibility issues. They are truly unsung heroes because it takes a lot of hard work without much glory to push against barriers and get this type of work done.”
Deputy Provost Laeeque Daneshmend presented the three awards:
The Queen’s Black Academic Society (QBAS) received the Employment Equity Award for its efforts to improve the experience of black students at Queen’s through open discussion, collaboration with one another, and relationship building and mentorship between current students, staff and faculty. The QBAS provides an atmosphere where students meet and discuss salient international, national and local issues through musical performances, poems, stories, literature, panel discussions, presentations and other forums. QBAS also organizes a variety of academic and social events focused on bringing to light contemporary and historical issues and challenges related to the black community.
The Human Rights Initiative Award went to CFRC Radio 101.9FM. CFRC was recognized for its commitment to offering a diverse and multi-faceted programming schedule that not only promotes music and news pieces from multicultural communities but also features daily independent news shows focused on social justice and human rights around the world and in Kingston. CFRC has an impressive list of long-standing community volunteers from diverse backgrounds. The station prides itself on being a social space where everyone is welcome to drop by, check out a show and listen to music. All volunteers receive mandatory anti-oppression training, making CFRC one of the only organizations on campus to commit to this level of human rights training.
Andrew Ashby, Accessibility Hub Coordinator, received the Steve Cutway Accessibility Award for his passion to create an environment where persons with disabilities are able to access a full, enriching and transformative Queen’s experience. Over the past 10 years, Mr. Ashby’s work for students, staff and faculty living with disabilities has been of the highest quality. As a person living with a disability himself, he fully appreciates the significance of being able to work and learn at Queen’s in a way that takes into account dignity, independence, integration, and equality of opportunity. Mr. Ashby was recognized for his work in coordinating the university’s first “Accessibility Hub,” a central, online resource for accessibility at Queen’s. This resource ensures that staff, students, faculty and visitors (with or without disabilities) are informed of all policies, practices and procedures concerning accessibility initiatives.