LegalEase is broadcast by a collective of law students on CKUT 90.3 FM in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, every second Friday of the month at 11am EST.
This monthly radio show explores the law and its institutions with a critical lens. It aims to make the law both accessible and engaging.
LegalEase est une émission consacrée au droit qui vise à en rendre le jargon plus accessible tout en évaluant de manière critique ses institutions.
La lutte contre le projet de LOI 21: Systemic racism & discrimination in present day Quebec
Bill 21 prohibits capable persons from working public sector jobs if they wear any visibly religious symbols. Since it became law, many people who want to serve the Quebec public have had their dreams destroyed. It is easy to understand why this law disproportionately affects minorities, pushing them out of employment and further marginalizing them. Beyond the letter of the law, Bill 21 has many dangerous implications, which demand reflection about the ways discrimination continues to be perpetuated by our governments.
Legalease's Audrey sits down with UQAM Professor Vincent Romani to discuss coded racism, and the ways in which Bill 21, as a colonial law, deprives minorities from their subjectivity and humanity, while giving in to the ‘québécois-es pure laine’ a right to racism.
Legalease's Michelle interviews Maître William Korbatly, a lawyer in Quebec who gives workshops about the effects of Bill 21. Me. Kobatly discusses the ongoing legal challenge of Bill 21, as well as the right to gender equality and the right of linguistic minorities to autonomy when it comes to education.
Legalease's Camila chats with McGill Law student Asiyah Siddique, she is VP Academic and part of the Muslim Law Students Association. Asiyah talks about who she is, her take on bill 21, and how she still makes the case for optimism.
Thank you to everyone who contributed their time to this episode, the speakers, and those who are working to raise awareness about the harmful impact of Bill 21.
Photo from: Manifestation en solidarité contre la Loi 21 at the Palais de Justice, Montreal.
Essential Workers Unprotected by their Governments
Frontline and essential workers are the people who keep us fed, and cared for everyday. The Covid-19 Pandemic has brought us to question whether the employment and labour laws in place do enough to protect these workers. Will we continue to take these populations for granted?
Our conversations highlight the inevitable intersection between employment rights, migrant workers, and the systemic inequalities that keep marginalized groups in positions of vulnerability and exploitations.
Legalease's Michelle speaks with Vicki McKenna and Catheryn Hoy, President and Vice-president of the Ontario Nurses Association.
Michelle also spoke with Jennifer Scott, a courier and organizer with Foodsters United.
Legalease’s Camila spoke with Marco Luciano, the Executive Director of Migrante Alberta.
We also hear McGill Law Professor Adelle Blackett, speaking at an event sponsored by Montreal en Action, an organization challenging systemic racism in the city. Professor Blackett is an expert in labour and employment law, trade regulation, and critical race theory.
Defunding the Police for Safer Communities
“Defund the Police” - we’ve heard it on the news, we’ve seen posters at marches for Black Lives Matter around the United States, and Montreal is no different. Over 40 organizations in Montreal have united in a Coalition that is calling for defunding the Montreal police service in order to achieve a safer society for all persons.
We chat with Jessica Quijano an organizer for the Defund the Police Coalition, with Alexandra Pierre from La Ligue des droits et libertés, as well as hear from Marlihan Lopez, Sandra Wesley, Janis Qavavauq, and Stephanie Germain.
Song credit: What's Going On by Stevie Wonder, & Self by Noname.
Image by: MTLBlog https://www.mtlblog.com/news/canada/qc/montreal/defunding-the-spvm-is-an-option-listed-in-montreals-budget-survey-for-residents
We are all essential: full, permanent status for all migrants in Canada
Covid19 has shown us that we are all connected: if one person is at risk, we are all at risk. At the same time, it has heightened the realities of existing exploitation, racism, and injustice in the immigration system and in labour, health care, policing, prisons, and social services.
Our guests this month argue that the current crisis presents an opportunity for radical transformation: to build a society where no one is left behind, where all are provided with full immigration status.
In this episode, we speak with Status for All organizer Muhamed Barry, Janet Dench of the Canadian Council for Refugees, and Hannah Deegan with the Association for the Rights of Household and Farm Workers.
Image credit: Solidarity Across Borders, https://www.instagram.com/p/CCOowSvHB4i/.
Advocating For Decarceration During a Pandemic
This episode looks at how people in Canada's prisons are affected by COVID-19, and the movement for decarceration. Lawyer Yavar Hameed talks about how COVID-19 put a spotlight on prison conditions. Anti-Carceral Group member Ted Rutland talks about the recent death of Robert Langevin -- who had been awaiting trial in a Montreal prison -- and the broader health crisis in provincial and federal prisons across Quebec and Canada.
Image: "ny state prisons" by AK Rockefeller is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
Over-represented, incarcerated, Indigenous
A recent report by the Correctional Investigator of Canada found that Indigenous over-incarceration in the federal system has hit a record high of 30 per cent. That number is expected to climb to 33 per cent in the next three years, yet Indigenous people account for only five per cent of Canada’s population.
In reaction to the report, criminal lawyers and advocacy groups have reiterated their calls for the federal government to mass pardon Indigenous inmates who are not locked away for violent crimes.
In this episode we speak to Lionel Chartrand and Max Silverman, lawyers who work with Indigenous peoples in Canada’s prisons.
Image credit: Office of the Correctional Investigator, https://www.oci-bec.gc.ca/cnt/photo/Quebec/index_portcartier-eng.aspx