November 15, 2016
On Saturday, November 19, UBC Faculty of Education Senior Associate Dean and Professor Mary Bryson participated in the high-profile, Forum Examining Bill C-16 and the Ontario Human Rights Code, hosted by the University of Toronto (U of T). Invited by U of T, Bryson participated in the forum with its faculty members Brenda Cossman, Professor of Law and Director of the Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies and Jordan Peterson, Professor of Psychology. The forum was moderated by Mayo Moran, Professor of Law and Provost, Trinity College, also of U of T.
The recorded session is now available:
Bill C-16, which recently passed second reading in Canada’s parliament, would amend the Canadian Human Rights Act to include gender identity and gender expression to prohibited grounds of discrimination. Provisions of the OHRC, which came into effect in 2012, protect people from discrimination and harassment on the basis of gender identity and gender expression.
Bill C-16 and provisions of the OHRC have recently become a topic of heated debate after Peterson posted a series of videos on academic freedom, freedom of speech and his refusal to use gender neutral pronouns. His comments have been featured extensively within news and social media around the world.
According to Professor David Cameron, Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Science at U of T, the forum “aims to permit – in an academic setting – the rational examination of the various views raised by this controversy.”
The forum is anticipated to generate impassioned communication in social and traditional media coverage. This will be a landmark public discussion on academic freedom and the role of public universities in relation to human rights and discrimination.
About Professor Mary Bryson
Professor Mary Bryson is Senior Associate Dean, Administration, Faculty Affairs & Innovation and Professor, Department of Language and Literacy Education, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia. Bryson is the author of multiple publications concerning the social, cultural and educational significance of networked media technologies and publics that make significant contributions to theoretical accounts of gendered and sexual marginality, knowledge mobilization and resilience.
Bryson chairs the UBC Vice-Presidential Trans, Two-Spirit and Gender Diversity Task Force and is a member of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) Global Education Initiative.
They are the recipient of multiple awards for their interdisciplinary scholarship, including most recently, the American Educational Research Association “Significant Body of Research Award” (2013), a Senior Fellowship (2011) at Stanford University’s Clayman Institute for Gender Research, and in 2000, the Canadian Women in the Spotlight, Wired Women “Pioneer in New Media” award.
At present, their CIHR-funded Cancer’s Margins project is the first nation-wide Canadian research study designed to advance our understanding of how sexuality and gender shape breast and gynecologic cancer health knowledge access, and its mobilization in health and treatment decision-making and implications for the design of care that is both medically and culturally competent.