Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Black communities continue to live with the effects of prejudice, discrimination, and hatred—from unconscious bias to anti-Black hate crimes and violence. This has its origins in Canada’s history of colonialism, slavery, and segregation. Despite decades of work by Black communities to reduce the injustices affecting Black people, inequalities continue to exist in Canada. The murder of a Black man, George Floyd from Minnesota, US, on May 25, 2020 by police, galvanized mass international protests against anti-Black racism, systemic discrimination and police brutality. Similar incidents have also occurred in Canada.
Canada’s Black Justice Strategy (the Strategy) is the federal government’s response to address anti-Black racism and systemic discrimination that has led to the overrepresentation of Black people in the criminal justice system, including as victims of crime. The Strategy will aim to help ensure that Black people have access to equal treatment and equal protection before the law in Canada.
The Strategy is being developed in collaboration with an external Steering Group of Black experts and leaders and in consultation with Black communities across Canada. This work will ensure that the Strategy reflects the diversity of experiences, backgrounds, and regional realities of Black people in Canada, as well as different intersectionalities such as disability, mixed racial heritage, language, gender, sexual orientation, religion and age.
At the international level, Canada’s Black Justice Strategy will help respond to the United Nations’ International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024)’s call to action, which recognizes the barriers experienced by Black people, including in the criminal justice system, and urges reform and modernization of justice systems across the world.
Yet to occur
Establishment of Steering Group
Consultations with Black communities
Final Strategy Report from the external Steering Group
Development and release of the Implementation Plan
Implementation of Canada's Black Justice Strategy
Participate in consultations and engagements to inform the development of Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Read the Framework, developed by the external Steering Group to guide consultations and engagements on Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Meet the external Steering Group that will provide strategic advice on the development of Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Overview of the different phases and next steps for the development of Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Answers to frequently asked questions about engagement on and the development of Canada’s Black Justice Strategy
Additional information and resources
- Fact Sheet: Key Facts and Statistics about the Overrepresentation of Black People in the Criminal Justice System
- Fact Sheet: Key Historical Facts about Anti-Black Racism and Discrimination in Canada
- February 15, 2023: Critical work on the next phase of Canada’s Black Justice Strategy begins
- November 18, 2022: Providing legal support to pregnant racialized women and their families in Montréal
- November 18, 2022: Statement by Minister Lametti on Royal Assent of legislation that addresses systemic racism and discrimination in the criminal justice system
- November 17, 2022: Supporting legal services and supports for Black and racialized communities in Montréal
- November 12, 2022: Providing support to racialized members of 2SLGBTQI+ communities in Toronto
- November 9, 2022: Addressing systemic anti-Black racism and discrimination in the justice system in Toronto
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