SBA Newsletter [January 31, 2017]

SBA Programming and Events

  • Advocacy Committee Meeting
  • The Muslims are Coming!
  • Surviving Together Workshop
  • Crafternoon

Community Events and Resources

  • Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity Office Drop In Hours
  • First Do Less Harm – Tonight
  • National Days of Against Islamophobia and White Supremacy
  • 12th Annual Strawberry Ceremony
  • Honouring Our Students Pow Wow and Indigenous Festival

SBA Programming and Events

SBA Advocacy Committee Meeting

Join Student for Barrier-free Access for our first Advocacy Committee meeting of the Winter Term!

Date: Thursday February 2, 2017
Time: 3:00pm-5:00pm
Location: SBA Centre, 215 Huron Street, Suite 924, on the 9th floor

Access notes:
Please note that the SBA centre is a scent-free space.

An accessible and all-gender washroom is located on the same floor as the meeting room.

Snacks will be provided, including vegan and gluten-free options.
New members are very welcome! If you are interested in joining the Advocacy Committee and volunteering with us, please contact Nadia at


The Muslims Are Coming!

This event is the first of a series which aims to create a critical conversation space for people who have some connection to Muslim identity including through family, history, and/or culture. People who identify as practicing, non-practicing, or something in between are all welcome.

Using short video clips of poetry, prose, comedy and documentaries, we will discuss the multifaceted experiences of growing up and living in migrant Muslim families/communities and the politics of being Muslim in our current times. Our conversation will centre the experiences of black and racialized Muslims and in particular the voices of queer, trans, disabled and mad people.

The topic for this session will be state surveillance, islamophobic violence, and current events. This will also be a space to talk about ways in which we can respond to current events and how we can collectively hold space to grieve.

The Muslims Are Coming! is part of a monthly discussion series organized by SBA and CWTP.

Date: Wednesday February 8th, 2017

Time: 1:30-3:30PM

Location: 569 Spadina Ave (Accessible entrance via Bancroft Ave), Multifaith Centre / Koffler Building, Room 208, Main Activity Hall

Access Info: Wheelchair accessible building. Accessible, gender-neutral washroom on same floor as event. TTC tokens available. Video clips will have captioning or will be accompanied by written text of the dialogue. Family-friendly space. Please arrive scent-free. Snacks including vegan and gluten-free options will be served.

If you have any other access needs please contact

Allies, we appreciate your support in helping us maintain this closed conversations space for people who have connections to Muslim identity and by sharing this event info with your networks.


Surviving Together; A Self-Advocacy Workshop for Disabled Students

Join Students for Barrier-free Access (SBA) for a student-run orientation for disabled students and student advocates. Whether you are an undergraduate or graduate student, full-time or part-time, new or returning, an international or transfer student, this orientation is for you!
Come meet other disabled students and SBA members, enjoy some snacks, and learn more about self-advocacy and resources for disabled students on campus.

Guest Speakers include:
Tess Sheldon Staff Lawyer, ARCH Disability Law Centre
Elizabeth Kurz, Downtown Legal Services
Ellen Hodnett, Ombudsperson, Office of the University Ombudsperson, University of Toronto

Topics covered at the orientation:
– Know Your Rights as a disabled student – Presented by ARCH Disability Law Centre
– self-advocacy and navigating academic accommodations
– introduction to campus resources and services for disabled students
– introduction to Students for Barrier-Free Access’ resources and services

Date: Friday February 10, 2017

Time: 3pm-5pm

Location: 246 Bloor Street West (Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social work) room 702, 7th floor

Everyone welcome!
Wheelchair accessible. Live captioning will be available.
Accessible and gender-neutral washroom located on the same floor as the event room.
Please note that this will be a scent-free space.

Light refreshments, including vegan and gluten-free options, will be served.

If you require ASL to participate in the event, or if you have any other access needs please contact Nadia at



Join us for another Crafternoon on Thursday February 9th, 2016 from 4:30 to 6:30pm. We will be learning how to do string art! We have limited supplies so please let me know if you’re interested by emailing: . To learn more, check out:

215 Huron street, room 924. All-Gender washroom on the same floor.


Community events and Resources

Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity Office Drop In Hours


Enjoy critical discussions about race, faith, gender and other intersections of identity?

Don’t have a space to talk about these topics?

Come to our drop-in hours!

We have SNACKS!!!

For more information check out:


First Do Less Harm

An exciting event presented by the Centre for Community Partnerships and the Canadian Harm Reduction Network.

First Do Less Harm: the Future of Canada’s Drug Policy. Come engage in a discussion with a panel of experts, including a person with current drug-use experience speaking on topics such as marijuana legislation, the opioid crisis, decriminalizing or legalizing all drugs, and more!

Sing up on Facebook!

Open to all. Free food. Free admission.

Please help spread the word!

Tuesday, January 31 at 6 PM – 8 PM (followed by an informal networking opportunity from 8-9 PM)

Multi Faith Centre, 569 Spadina Ave.

Main Activity Hall (2nd floor)

-Trevor Stratton, Coordinator of the International Indigenous Working Group on HIV & AIDS (IIWGHA)
-Eugene Oscapella, Researcher, criminology professor, founding member of Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy
-Patricia Erickson, Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the University of Toronto and scientist emerita at CAMH
-Raffi Balian, Manager of COUNTERfit Harm Reduction Program South Riverdale Community Health Centre; author
-Dessy Pavlova, Vice Chair, Board of Directors Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy

Moderated by JOE FIORITO, Former Toronto Star Journalist and author

Presented by the Canadian Harm Reduction Network and the Centre for Community Partnerships

Sponsored by Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Hart House, Univesity of Toronto Students’ Union , Urban Studies Program, Innis College


National Days of Action Against Islamophobia and White Supremacy

National Days of Action Against Islamophobia & Deportations
February 4-5, 2017

We are tired.

The war waged against Muslims and refugees worldwide has reached its boiling point with Trump’s Presidency. These xenophobic, anti-Black, Islamophobic, anti-refugee racist, sexist, homophobic and transphobic policies have come to fruition. Walls and bans against Muslims and Refugees on stolen Indigenous lands. We affirm our solidarity with Indigenous nations whose lands we reside on.

Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya and Yemen. The geographies of our birth place that put targets on our heads. Families separated, refugees, asylum seekers and immigrants deported and detained, trapped in between borders or taken back – our communities are being terrorized by white supremacist violence and domination. Our movement is confronted by racist white nationalism, our lives are devastated in constant fear. We flee war, persecution, mass poverty in search for life – instead we get a fatal sentence for our faith.

Enough is Enough.

On January 29th, in Quebec City a group of Muslims were praying in a mosque at the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre when one gunman came in and rang shots throughout this place of worship. Six have died, even more are injured. We mourn their lives. Last summer during the holy month of Ramadan, a pig’s head was left at the doorstep. The president of the cultural centre hoped the event was an isolated incident, and responded with nothing but love and respect to the Centre’s neighbours.

Colonial borders are imaginary constructs.

The white supremacist hatred of Muslims and refugees from all intersections world wide is the colonizing force that fuels the identity and economy of America just as much as Canada. Trump’s power is extended to Trudeau’s. The institutional and systemic Islamophobic, anti-Black and racist policies that are killing us at the border, in the streets, in our homes, at work and in our mosques are one. We are under attack on all fronts, especially those of us who live in the intersections of Blackness and Muslimness and are Refugees who are the first to be silenced, ignored or forgotten.

Not another life. Not another mass murder.

Our resistance does not stop here. Now more than ever we must organize. This is a national call to action to plan demonstrations in your cities, Canada wide. Join us, as we rise up!

Date:Saturday, February 4 at
Time: 12:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Location: US Consulate



1) The Canadian government must make an immediate public condemnation of the executive order by President Trump that bans Muslim visa-holders from seven countries and also bans all refugees from entering the US.

2) Canada must immediately open the Canada-USA border.

This includes revocation of the Safe Third Country Agreement which bars most refugee claimants entering from the United States over land to claim asylum in Canada. The Designated Country of Origin list, which makes it almost impossible for US citizens and citizens of forty other countries to claim asylum in Canada, must be eliminated.

3) Canada must end racist, anti-refugee, anti-Black, Islamophobic exclusion of migrants and refugees within this colonial border.

This includes ending the system of indefinite immigration detention. The federal government must create a regularization program so that all undocumented residents can live here with their families rather than fear mass deportation. Migrant workers in Canada must also be given permanent status and open work permits. We want real, not symbolic, Sanctuaries that guarantee access to services and refuse collaboration with Canadian and American border agents.

4) Canada must rescind all federal legislation that attacks racialized Black and Brown Muslims and refugees, including the Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act as well as anti-terror legislation such as Security Certificates and Bill C51.

Statement initiated by Black Lives Matter – Toronto

With the support of:
Anti-Fascist Action Calgary
Black Lives Matter -Vancouver
Coalition Against Bigotry – Pacific
Idle No More
Justicia for Migrant Workers
Kashmir Solidarity Group – Toronto
No One Is Illegal – London, Ontario
No One Is Illegal – Toronto
No One Is Illegal -Vancouver Coast Salish territories
People for Peace – London,Ontario
Refugees Welcome – victoria/lekwungen territory Victoria
Salaam -Vancouver: Queer Muslim Community
Siraat Muslim Collective – Vancouver
Tamil Freedom Coalition
Toronto Street Medics
Trikone – Vancouver


12th Annual Strawberry Ceremony

Strawberry Ceremony with Elder Wanda Whitebird begins at 12:30 at Police Headquarters, 40 College Street at Bay, Toronto

Please leave your agency, institutional and organisation banners at home and instead make signs in honour of women, girls, trans and two-spirit people who have died violent and premature deaths.

Singers, song keepers and drummers please bring your drums for the ceremony. Drummers from the organising committee, with the direction of Wanda, will be leading songs. Jingle dress dancers are also called to join on the march. Please contact us if you can participate so protocols can be observed.

We recognise that February is out of season for a ceremony involving strawberries, but the violence we are experiencing is also a disruption in our traditional ways of life.

Accessibility info:
It might be COLD! Please dress for the weather and we will endeavour to keep ceremony to 1 hour.
Some tokens will be available
There will be a sound system

Media and public attention to this issue has continued to grow since we gathered last year but Indigenous women are still going missing and being murdered. No More Silence has continued to work hard to create a community-owned database in collaboration with Families of Sisters in Spirit and the Native Youth Sexual Health Network in It Starts with Us – the collaboration has also produced these beautiful tributes:

On February 14th we come together in solidarity with the women who started this vigil over 20 years ago in Vancouver’s DTES, and with the marches and rallies that will be taking place across this land. We stand in defense of our lives and to demonstrate against the complicity of the state in the ongoing genocide of Indigenous women and the impunity of state institutions and actors (police, RCMP, coroners’ offices, the courts, and an indifferent federal government) that prevents justice for all Indigenous peoples.

No More Silence began holding ceremony at police headquarters on February 14th 12 years ago. 5 years ago we formed the February 14th Organizing Committee in an effort to broaden community participation in the planning of the event – the committee is now made up of individuals and organizations including The Native Youth Sexual Health Network, Sistering, Maggies – Toronto Sex Workers Action Project and other feminist and Indigenous community organizations.

Please message us if you would like to volunteer, or add to the list of endorsements!

For more information:


Honouring Our Students Pow Wow and Indigenous Festival will be a celebration that honours all students at University of Toronto. 

The day will be filled with activities of a traditional powwow, and we will also be celebrating all the Indigneous communities that call Toronto home.

It’s a day to celebrate academic journeys and Indigenous culture.

Everyone is welcome, especially all students of University of Toronto.

The event details are as follows:

Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 12-6pm
Location: Athletic Centre – Sports Gym

Honouring Our Students Pow Wow and Indigenous Festival 2017​ VIPs and Staff.

Master of Ceremonies
Chris Pheasant

Arena Director
Amos Key Jr.

Head Veteran – Eagle Staff Carrier
Andrew Wesley
James Bird

Host Drum Group
Smoke Trail

Co-Host Drum
Young Creek
Charging Horse

Head Male Dancer
Buck Neshkiwe AKA Standing Bear

Head Female Dancer
Nichole Leveck

Alex McKay
Andrew Wesley
Lee Maracle

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