Spotlight On: the PSAC BC Mainland Human Rights Committee

The BC Mainland Human Rights Committee is one of the oldest constitutionally recognized committees in BC. It was originally chartered in the 1990’s as the Aboriginal, Visible Minority and Persons with Disabilities (AVMPWD) Committee – times changed, and the name was changed to the Human Rights Committee in the 2000’s.

The committee is based in Vancouver and PSAC members from all equity-seeking groups are welcome to participate.

The HRC’s mandate is to represent PSAC members from the aboriginal, GLBTQ, racially visible, and members with disabilities caucuses and to organize activism around equity issues.

“The HRC also supports activists in activities related equity issues by funding initiatives and by providing volunteer opportunities.” says Todd Smith, who co-chairs the committee alongside Ferzana Samnani, “We also raise the profile of and advance equity issues within our union and the broader community. And we’re very active at community events – we’ve hosted booths at the Surrey and Vancouver Pride Festivals, the Fusion Festival, National Aboriginal Day celebrations, the Annual Women’s Memorial March, and more.”

The HRC also organizes events around Black History Month, Asian Heritage Month, Transgender Day of Remembrance, International Human Rights Day, and other significant dates.

“Our committee also plays an active role in the education of PSAC members, employers, and communities around human rights and acts as a resource to members around equity issues.” continues Ferzana, “We also work on common issues with and forge links with links with other human rights groups and coalition partners.”

The committee would like to invite to all PSAC members and their partners to their next event, an open house and barbecue on Tuesday June 16th. You can find more information and an form where you can RSVP here.

As a constitutionally recognized committee, the HRC also sends a delegate and resolutions to PSAC Regional Convention, and participates in national equity conferences and initiatives.