Call for Nominations for 2019 Peter Gillespie Social Justice Award

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PETER GILLESPIE SOCIAL JUSTICE AWARD: 2018 recipient - The Immigrant Workers Centre Credit: Kristina Corre

Do you know an organization carrying out transformative work to promote sexual and reproductive health and rights?

Help to raise the profile of this remarkable organization by nominating them for the 2019 Peter Gillespie Social Justice Award.

In its third year, this award commemorates the legacy of Peter Gillespie by honouring the work of Canadian social justice organizations. The thematic focus of the award changes annually. In 2019, the theme is the promotion of sexual and reproductive health and rights.

With a history of social justice work in Canada and internationally since 1975, Inter Pares is a feminist organization which promotes social justice. We wish to share our experience and lend our support to each year’s recipient of the Peter Gillespie Social Justice Award. The recipient will be honoured during the opening of Inter Pares annual event on Monday April 29, 2019.

The recipient organization will also have the opportunity to engage in discussions with political decision makers on Parliament Hill as well as other civil society organizations working on sexual and reproductive health and rights.

We invite you to submit a nomination, and to take this opportunity to help raise the profile of organizations doing important work.

The recipient organization will be invited to Ottawa for an exchange with Inter Pares on advocacy and networking strategies, including:

  • travel and accommodation expenses for five days in Ottawa (if the recipient organization is not based in the national capital region) for two representatives of the recipient organization;
  • a public speaking opportunity following the presentation of the award at Inter Pares' annual event on April 29, 2019;
  • meetings with MPs and Senators and/or their staff, depending on availability;
  • meetings in Ottawa with similar organizations working on sexual and reproductive health and rights nationally and internationally;
  • meetings with Inter Pares staff members to exchange ideas and mutual support related to organizational management, fundraising, and advocacy;
  • sharing of the recipient organization’s publications and events through Inter Pares communications channels over a six-month period.

Inter Pares is very excited to get acquainted with the inspiring work of the recipient organization and to learn from their experience. As always in our work, the learning journey is mutual.

We invite you to submit a nomination, and not to miss this incredible opportunity to raise the profile of an exceptional Canadian organization that you know.

Nomination criteria

The organization being nominated must:

  • have a total budget of $500,000 or less in their most recent fiscal year
  • be an organization or group in Canada whose exceptional work addresses sexual and reproductive health and rights
  • not be an existing Inter Pares counterpart

Nominations deadline

The deadline for nominations is March 17th, 2019. The nomination form is available on our website.

Selection process

A selection committee of four people will analyze the nominations received and verify eligibility. The choice of the selection committee will be based on an analysis of the organization’s impact, community engagement, and leadership.

Please contact Inter Pares staff members Rebecca Wolsak and Jack Hui Litster if you have any questions.


Past Recipients of the Peter Gillespie Social Justice Award

2018: The Immigrant Workers Centre

Thematic focus for 2018 award: Discrimination and social exclusion

Founded in 2000, the Immigrant Workers Centre (IWC) defends the rights of immigrants in their place of work and fights for dignity, respect, and justice. Some of their principal objectives include popular education about workers' rights, improving living and working conditions for immigrant workers and providing a safe place for immigrant workers to receive information, resources and referrals.

2017: The Canadian Council of Muslim Women

Thematic focus for 2017 award: Women's rights

Founded in 1982, the Canadian Council of Muslim Women (CCMW) is a leading progressive voice for Muslim women in Canada. CCMW works diligently to promote and encourage understanding and interfaith dialogue between Muslims and other faith communities. The work of the Canadian Council of Muslim Women embodies the values this award seeks to honour. In the face of increasing and sometimes tragically violent discrimination against Muslims in Canada, they have continued to raise their voices for the universality of human rights, and against restrictions or discrimination based on religion, gender or race.

Who was Peter Gillespie?                                                                   

Over the twenty-five years that Peter worked for Inter Pares (1985-2010), he brought his passion, courage, talent, and deep commitment to social justice to many issues and struggles around the world. Most notable among these were his years of collaboration with civil society organizations in Bangladesh, building movements for food sovereignty, landless rights, and democracy; his challenge to population control measures and discourse, exposing their racist and anti-poor underpinnings, and supporting the dismantlement of coercive programs; his relentless promotion of human rights in Burma, including raising millions of dollars to support refugees and displaced people; his solidarity with sugarworkers in the Philippines, who succeeded in transforming a feudal system and gaining rights to their land; his work in drawing public and government attention to the consequences of massive capital flight and tax evasion from developing countries into the global financial system. Throughout, he was also a staunch ally and supporter of women’s struggles for justice and autonomy, both in Canada and abroad.

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