Ask Women Anything panel on sexual harassment highlights need for women’s voices in media

Anchal Sharma, Editor

On Thursday Nov. 30, Media Action, an Ottawa-based non profit organization that pushes for gender equity within the media, hosted their second fall panel of their Ask Women Anything Series—an event where women who are experts in various fields and have media connections come together to answer questions by the general public.

The event is intended to give women the opportunity to voice their informed opinions about a certain topic, with Thursday’s panel focussing on sexual harassment, and the Me Too campaign.

“Ask Women Anything started when we (realized) ‘hey I know this woman, and she’s an expert…’ wouldn’t it be great if we could hear from these women, and amplify their voices,” said Amanda Parraig, the president of Media Action, adding that it was inspired by Reddit’s Ask Me Anything subreddit.

The latest edition of the event took place at Bar Robo and heard from Amy Kishek, a labour lawyer, Yamikani Msosa, Vice Chair of the Ontario Coalition of Rape Crisis Centres, Major Nancy Perron—a military officer in the Canadian Armed Forces with a masters of psychology—and Chelby Marie Daigle, editor-in-chief of Muslim Link.

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Justin Trudeau delivers apology to LGBTQ+ community

Apology highlights government’s impacts on families, employment opportunities

Graham Robertson, Editor

On Tuesday, Nov. 28, leaders from Canada’s major political parties delivered an apology to the LGBTQ+ community in the House of Commons.

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Editorial: Community news closures indicate consumer-driven business model is long overdue for Ottawa

Savannah Awde, Editor

On the morning of Monday Nov. 27, Postmedia announced an acquisition of 22 Torstar community newspapers and two free commuter dailies, and the closure of nine in Ottawa.

This change means the exit of well-known community papers in Ottawa, such as Metro Ottawa, the Kanata Kourier-Standard, Nepean/Barrhaven News, Orleans News, Ottawa East News, and more.

According to Paul Godfrey, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, “This transaction allows Postmedia to focus on strategic areas and core products, and allows us to continue with a suite of community-based products, in a deeply disrupted industry.”

There’s no debating that this industry is undergoing a massive overhaul. What’s worth debating is whether the answer to this transformational period is to shut down news outlets that are investigating and reporting at a local level.

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Protest at Libyan embassy seeks Canadian action on alleged slave trade in Libya

Savannah Awde, Editor

The sidewalk at the intersection of Metcalfe and Slater Street was busier than usual on the afternoon of Wednesday Nov. 22, as protesters gathered in front of the Libyan embassy. This action came as part of a string of global rallies seeking to draw attention to reports of African migrants being sold as slaves in Libya.

According to event organizer Faridath Yessoufou, the protest was born simply by people coming together through their anger towards the situation. “We are not a movement, we are just people,” Yessoufou said.

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Anti-Kinder Morgan pipeline rally comes in response to Alberta Premier’s speech

Savannah Awde, Editor

On Tuesday Nov. 21, at 11:30 a.m., the Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change (QBACC) assembled in front of the Chateau Laurier to rally against the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline project. The group cited negative environmental implications and a lack of Indigenous consultation as key issues to address.

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Trans Day of Remembrance to provide community space of mourning

Event reminds Ottawa to reflect on high rate of violence against transgender people

Savannah Awde, Editor

Though some may think of events around transgender rights as rallies or protests, the Trans Day of Remembrance stands in contrast as a space of mourning and reflection.

On Monday, Nov. 20, Ottawa’s annual Transgender Day of Remembrance will return to the capital. Organizer Fae Johnstone emphasizes that this is primarily a day for trans folks to mourn through vigil, but also for cis folks to engage with the broad range of issues facing trans communities.

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Introducing, Undercurrent

Undercurrent is a newcomer to the Ottawa media scene, and is hoping to bring a fresh take to both social justice and political coverage by exploring the complex connection between the two. We are a small but determined team of journalists with extensive experience covering Ottawa news, and a relentless passion for social justice and politics. More information will be posted here in the coming weeks, on our Twitter feed (@undercurrentott), and Instagram (@undercurrent_ottawa). Follow us, and learn how your community is making waves from a grassroots to federal level.