Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for health and well-being (Article 25, Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Newcomers grow food together at Rainbow Community Garden, U of Manitoba. Photo courtesy of Trevor Hagan, Winnipeg Free Press

Food Sovereignty

Dr. Annette Desmarais, Canada Research Chair in Human Rights, Social Justice and Food Sovereignty, conducts participatory research with member organizations of the transnational Vía Campesina agrarian movement. She studies changing land tenure patterns on the Prairies and regulation of small-scale production and direct marketing in Manitoba, while doing fieldwork in Spain with the Basque Farmers Union.

Desmarais chaired a panel discussion in 2021 on the new UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants that was co-sponsored by the Centre for Human Rights Research.

University of Guelph history professor Brittany Luby and Niisaachewan Anishinaabe Nation Chief Loraine Cobiness are helping revitalize manomin (wild rice) crops flooded by hydro development in northwestern Ontario.

Watch their 2020 talk co-sponsored by the Centre for Human Rights Research here.

Water Rights

The right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation is a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights. (United Nations General Assembly, July 2010)

The Centre for Human Rights Research has been co-ordinating interdisciplinary research on First Nations and drinking water and sanitation since the Centre’s inception.

Dr. Nicole Wilson chaired a panel discussion in April 2022 on the many complexities of water (in)security for Indigenous peoples. Panelists engaged with the ways that water (in)security is (re)produced by jurisdictional and regulatory injustices and the broader political and economic asymmetries created by settler-colonial water governance. They also explored the distinct understandings of security and well-being that flow from Indigenous relationships to water as a living entity and the ways they shape desirable water futures. View the discussion below.