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Justice

Feature

September 2018

Thousands of Ontario students protesting Doug Ford’s changes to curriculum this Friday

By Mugoli Samba

High school students across the province are taking part in We The Students Do Not Consent protests this Friday at 1 p.m.

Feature

September 2018

'Under the Trump administration, all are considered criminals'

By Julie McGonegal

The U.S. president's portrayal of refugees and migrants is "dehumanizing," says this minister and longtime advocate, and Trump's policies have made it harder for churches that are trying to help them.

Feature

September 2018

This grieving mother started Regina protest camp that stood for nearly 200 days

By Alexa Lawlor

The Justice for Our Stolen Children camp was ordered on Sept. 7 to leave the area.

Feature

September 2018

How our makeup puts children in danger

By Glynis Ratcliffe

Mica gives many cosmetics that sought-after glimmer, but it often comes at a cost.

Feature

July 2018

Martin Luther King Jr. was right

By Glynis Ratcliffe

Civil disobedience has been a powerful tool for activists through the decades, and can still be for Canadians looking to stand up against injustice.

Feature

July 2018

86-year-old Hiroshima survivor is still fighting for a nuclear-free world

By Denise Davy

Setsuko Thurlow says that no one should ever endure the 'massive and grotesque scale of death and suffering' caused by an atomic bomb.

Special Feature

July 2018

Babies behind bars

By Raizel Robin

Women incarcerated in federal prisons are allowed to keep their children with them for up to five years, but few mothers do. We investigate why.

Feature

July 2018

Why this blanket exercise is now essential training for RCMP cadets

By Wanda Schmöckel

The exercise synthesizes 500 years of colonization under the observation of a local Indigenous elder.

Feature

June 2018

Palestinian activist informs the world through social media

By Mugoli Samba

Rana Nazzal talks about what protesting and reclaiming narratives is like in Palestine.

Feature

June 2018

How Canadians can help stop children being torn from their parents at the U.S. border

By Julie McGonegal

What can we really do this side of the border anyway? Quite a lot, actually. And there’s no time to waste.

Special Feature

June 2018

#MeToo in the United Church

By Trisha Elliott

9 women share their stories of harassment and sexual assault in the United Church.

Feature

June 2018

Why everyone is talking about the Safe Third Country Agreement

By Emma Prestwich

Canada has designated the U.S. a safe country for refugees, a stance many say should be changed given mass arrests and family separations.

Feature

June 2018

Secrets to writing an effective letter to your MP, from a former MP

By Jackie Gillard

Feature

May 2018

Why P.E.I. didn’t provide abortions for 35 years

By Angela Mombourquette

A group of pro-choice activists fought heavy opposition — and finally won last year

Feature

May 2018

Atlantic Canada’s abortion doula

By Angela Mombourquette

Feature

May 2018

Timeline of abortion access in P.E.I.

By Angela Mombourquette

Feature

May 2018

Courts tell residential school survivors they didn't go to a residential school

By Josiah Neufeld

During the 1960s and 1970s, more than 1,000 Indigenous children were sent to a United Church-run residence in Teulon, Man. Many were abused but have yet to be heard.

Feature

April 2018

How families cope when a loved one goes missing

By Justin Dallaire

A Quebec man went for a walk in the early morning of March 16, 2016, and hasn’t been seen since. His family, like many loved ones of the missing, finds it impossible to grieve — or give up hope.

Feature

March 2018

Thursdays in Black: Campaign calling an end to gender-based violence

By Kristy Woudstra

Lyn van Rooyen talks about the spiritual discipline of wearing black every week.

Feature

March 2018

The biggest threat to women in South Africa is their partners

By Kristy Woudstra

An investigation of why one woman is murdered every eight hours by her husband or boyfriend in this African country — and how advocates are trying to stop it.

Feature

February 2018

Every Canadian needs to read Senator Murray Sinclair's response to Stanley verdict

By Kristy Woudstra

After the acquittal of Gerald Stanley for the death of 22-year-old Colten Boushie, many expressed their anger, hurt and frustration on social media, including Senator Murray Sinclair, who chaired Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Feature

February 2018

Reconciliation process: What can Canada learn from Australia?

By Alanna Mitchell

Both countries have terrible histories with Indigenous peoples. The writer travels Down Under to find out how they're trying to make it right.

Feature

February 2018

Australian and Canadian churches work on promoting Indigenous rights

By Alanna Mitchell

Special Feature

January 2018

Jehovah's Witnesses cover-up

By Kristy Woudstra

Canadian survivors of childhood sexual abuse are coming forward to reveal how their church failed them — and protected their predators

Feature

December 2017

Inaccessible

By Kristy Woudstra

Immigration rules say would-be Canadians with disabilities can put an ‘excessive demand’ on the medical system. Families and supporters are fighting back.

Feature

October 2017

Language lifeline

By Richard Wright

As Indigenous elders pass on, a new generation is turning to technology to keep ancestral tongues alive

Feature

October 2017

Indigenous cuisine

By Kristy Woudstra

One of Canada’s hottest food trends has been millennia in the making. In Toronto alone, three Indigenous restaurants opened their doors over the past year, putting the spotlight on First Nations cuisine and traditions.

Feature

September 2017

Clamour on campus

By Justin Dallaire

Ideologies are colliding at Canadian universities, and free speech is caught in the crossfire

Feature

September 2017

Sidebar: Free speech flashpoints

By Justin Dallaire

Feature

September 2017

Sidebar: ‘Most students are very respectful of diverse political and religious views’

By Justin Dallaire

Rev. Ralph Carl Wushke, a United Church minister and ecumenical chaplain at the University of Toronto, talks about free speech on campus

Columns

Rev. Don Collett had a hand in writing the document that paved the way for the open ordination of LGBT folks in the United Church of Canada. (Credit: Bayne Stanley)

For me, the landmark United Church vote on sexual orientation came at a high personal cost

by Don Collett

"Justice was served at General Council. Yes. And harm was also done," says Rev. Don Collett.

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Observations

Editor/publisher of The Observer, Jocelyn Bell.

Should we apologize for the hurt surrounding the 1988 decision?

by Jocelyn Bell

The groundbreaking United Church vote on gay and lesbian ministers has transformed the denomination in the years since, but there's still work left to do.

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Video

Meet beloved church cats Mable and Mouse

by Observer Staff

They're a fixture of Kirk United Church Centre in Edmonton.

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Society

September 2018

11 Ontarians share their opioid stories in this powerful project

by Mugoli Samba

The Opioid Chapters hopes to add nuance to the public discussion on opioids.

Society

September 2018

Do we face a future without Down syndrome?

by Kevin Spurgaitis

Advances in prenatal testing mean parents can detect the chromosomal difference earlier. What does this mean for the future of Down Syndrome?

Faith

September 2018

I send my kids to Catholic school, but I'm not Catholic

by Pieta Woolley

A lifelong United Church member explains why she's embracing lessons in reading, writing and rosaries.

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