Canada’s Human Rights History

Canada’s Human Rights History is a site dedicated to documenting the history of human rights in Canada. The main pages include historical accounts of Human Rights Activism, Human Rights Law, and Human Rights in Foreign Policy. The additional main sections focus on key events in the history of human rights in Canada, including the Gouzenko Affair (1945-46), the October Crisis (1970), the Montreal Olympics (1976), and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms (1982). To access these introductions, use the main menu above or navigation tools below.

In addition, there is an immense digital archive for researchers that includes materials relating to human rights activism, law, international treaties, domestic legal statutes, the October Crisis, the Gouzenko Affair, the Montreal Olympics, and organizations such as the Jewish Labour Committee and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms‘ archive is the only comprehensive digital archive of submissions to the Special Joint Committee on the Constitution in 1981-2, which led to the final version of the Charter.

There is also a complementary site, State Funding for Social Movements, that provides an archive and searchable historical database of grants to non-governmental organizations (including human rights organizations) in Canada since the 1960s.

Other sections of this site include main events, biographiessocial movements, and further reading relating to the history of human rights in Canada. The site also provides regular updates on research funding and scholarships, conferences, publications, new resources, research centres, and institutions such as the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.

Canada’s Human Rights History was originally established in 1999. It is one of the oldest and still running historical websites in Canada. Unlike many other historical websites, this one is regularly maintained and updated as the author’s scholarship evolves over time. The latest installment is a new archive and history section on the Montreal Olympics (1976).