Learn About Your Charter Rights

Teaching and Learning Tools

COVID-19 notice: CCLA’s learning tools are free to everyone. We are adding more resources and we are available to do virtual workshops in English or French. Click here to book a workshop.

elementary resources

 Check out our animated series, along with lesson plans and video games designed to encourage learners aged 6-11 to think about what it means to be fair in democracy.

explore “that’s not fair”

We’ve made a list of some books we have used successfully with children and youth in order to introduce and explore various issues around rights and freedoms.

View our recommended book list

Borovoy Conference

Former CCLA General Counsel, Order of Canada Office, and life-long activist Alan Borovoy contributed creativity, eloquence, and unstoppable force of will in the pursuit of social justice in Canada. For 40+ years, Alan grappled with Canada’s most pressing social issues, from the marginalization of Indigenous people, to police misconduct, to attacks on free speech.

For over 20 years, the CCLA/CCLET’s Borovoy Conference have immersed youth in explorations of concepts former CCLA General Counsel Alan Borovoy held dear — rights, freedoms, and critical thinking. Each conference feature a diversity of speakers including legal and Charter of Rights and Freedoms experts, community leaders, and activists, and cover cutting edge civil liberties and equality issues.

Participating students come away with sound understandings of balancing competing rights, countering injustice, and advocacy strategies. They will have also met and spoken with the people making positive social change and holding up the civil liberties barriers in their communities and across the country.

Offered in Toronto each year and in other provinces as per demand and opportunity.

CCLET is able to go to provinces outside Ontario thanks to the generosity of longtime supporter and partner of Alan Borovoy, Myra Merkur.

upcoming conference

Winnipeg – Robson Hall Faculty of Law, University of Manitoba, Thursday, May 9, 2019

Calling Winnipeg High School Students!

On May 9, 2019, CCLET is collaborating with the Manitoba Association for Rights and Liberties, Robson Hall Faculty of Law’s Community Outreach Committee, and CanU to present the first Winnipeg Borovoy Conference!

We invite Winnipeg grade 11 and 12 students and their teachers to spend a day deep-diving into conversations with lawyers and activists on rights, freedoms, equality, and about making positive social change. In Winnipeg, students also get to be at law school for the day — we are kindly being hosted by Robson Hall Faculty of Law at the University of Manitoba.

Speakers include:

  • Sadie Phoenix Lavoie, Red Rising Magazine
  • Michael Bryant, Executive Director and General Counsel, CCLA
  • Anishnaabe Elder Fred Kelly
  • Adikheir Ahmed, Director, Immigration Partnership Winnipeg
  • Chantell Barker, Director of Justice and Law, First Nation Justice Strategy, Southern Chiefs Organizations Inc
  • Jordyn Sheldon, Education Coordinator, Manitoba Association for Rights and Liberties
  • Noa Mendelsohn Aviv, Director, Equality Program, CCLA

Session topics include:

  • Freedom of expression and hate speech
  • Privacy rights
  • LGBTQ+ rights
  • Refugee and immigration rights
  • Criminalization of Indigenous people
  • Conflict of freedoms
  • Religious freedoms
  • Youth activism

Details:

  • Thursday, May 9, 2019
  • 150 tickets, filled on a first-come, first served basis
  • University of Manitoba Robson Hall Faculty of Law
  • Students must be accompanied by teachers.
  • Free! Light lunch included (vegetarian option)
  • Sign in at Robson Hall starts at 8:30 – 9:00 am and the conference ends at 3:00 pm

 

Register here

Education

CIVIL LIBERTIES EDUCATION

COVID-19 notice: We are available to do virtual CCLA workshops for your classes. CLICK HERE TO BOOK A WORKSHOP WITH US!

The Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust (CCLET) is a non-profit research and educational organization created by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. 

Each year CCLET reaches 11,000+ elementary to graduate level students, from a wide range of public, separate, and private educational institutions. Through our Civil Liberties in the Classroom and our Teaching Civil Liberties programs, which are funded by both a Law Foundation of Ontario (LFO) grant and private donations, we provide workshops, seminars, and in-class sessions for schools, school boards, faculties of education, and community groups and nonprofit agencies, educating people in Canada about their rights and freedoms.

Our Ontario education programming is generously funded by the Law Foundation of Ontario. Thanks to their support, we are able to reach students and offer our programming to them and to their teachers. Thank you!

BOOK A WORKSHOP

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL WORKSHOPS

Looking for a guest speaker or workshop facilitator for your class or student group? Our Civil Liberties in the Schools program provides free, fun and engaging workshops for elementary classes where students have an opportunity to examine questions of fairness and rights. Using stories, videos, picture books, and lots of questions, our staff deliver elementary social studies curriculum on rights and responsibilities in ways that enable students participants to consider the choices made by people who live in a democracy.

To learn more, download a copy of CCLET’s Elementary Program Flyer or watch a short clip of a grade 5 workshop.

To request a workshop for your school or classroom, please submit an online request.

HIGH SCHOOL WORKSHOPS

Would you like a guest speaker or workshop facilitator to help explain the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to your classes? Our Civil Liberties in the Schools program provides free workshops in courses including Civics, Law, English, Family Studies, Social Justice, Equity, History, Indigenous Studies and other social science classes. We help teachers deliver curriculum on law, civil liberties, human rights, and the Charter, using a wide variety of resources including real legal cases and stories from the morning news. Workshops can be facilitated for classrooms, keynote addresses, student conferences, or school-wide events.

To learn more, download a copy of CCLET’s High School Program Flyer.

To request a workshop for your school or classroom, please submit an online request.

TEACHER AND PRE-SERVICE TEACHER PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOPS

How do democratic principles apply to the teaching profession? How can teachers help students develop the skills to address divergent views on controversial issues such as abortion, capital punishment, and LGBTQ2S+ rights? How far should we extend religious freedoms? How can we talk about the conflict between free speech and hate speech? How we discuss these issues in class? If we avoid them, what message do we send to students? If we open the debate, how do we facilitate respectful discussion?

Our Teaching Civil Liberties program facilitates free, interactive workshops that provide teachers and teacher candidates the tools to empower their students to think critically about and discuss issues for which there can be no perfect solution, and to actively seek out views that differ from their own.

To learn more about our Teaching Civil Liberties workshops, download a copy of CCLET’s Teaching Civil Liberties Program Flyer.

COMMUNITY WORKSHOPS

Do you belong to a seniors’ group, an ESL class, a newcomer group, a youth group, a social action committee, or other community group? Are you a community worker or a not-for-profit agency providing direct services?  Do you want to know more about your rights and freedoms ?

We facilitate workshops on civil liberties topics such as the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, freedom of expression, religious freedoms, equality, the right to protest, and privacy and surveillance.

To request a workshop for your group, please submit an online request here.

Si vous voulez organiser une présentation( en français) pour votre groupe, veuillez remplir le formulaire ici.

Learn about your charter rights

“That’s not fair” – An interactive civil liberties experience for kids 7-11

As soon as children can say, “That’s Not Fair!” they are ready to talk about their rights and freedoms. That’s Not Fair! is a series developed by the Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust to invite kids, ages 7 to 11, to think critically about what it means to live in a democracy.

LEARN HOW TO ADVOCATE FOR YOUR RIGHTS

Is there something you want to change? What does advocacy mean anyway? This is a guide to help you be the change and defend your rights.

want more resources?

Weigh in on our next case study: Artificial Intelligence…

CCLET hopes to keep adding case studies to the Remote Rights site, and we could use some help.

Because we know that projects get better when we include a diversity of opinions and engage with other people who care about rights education, we’re trying something new: we’re sharing our latest idea at the conceptual stage to see what kinds of responses we get. If you like it, if you hate it, if you have expertise that could help us move the idea forward, let us know!

While our ability to move projects forward is contingent on funding (we’re working on it!) we want to get the ball rolling now. So, read about the idea here, check out our initial user experience map, and see what you think.

“Creating Criminals” Case Study

The background: Artificial Intelligence (AI)  increasingly plays a role in the criminal justice and public safety systems via risk assessments. Courts in the US use these tools at many stages to make significant decisions about accused individuals, a trend that may soon extend to Canadian courts. Police departments are also using similar tools in predictive policing applications for a range of activities from predicting crime ‘hot spots’ to creating ‘heat lists’ of people at risk to commit serious criminal acts. These data-driven practices carry a wide range of risks for individual rights, including privacy and equality rights, while running the risk of rendering systems that must be publicly accountable increasingly opaque. The Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust (CCLET) will bring its 20+ years of experience teaching youth to engage critically with rights issues to this topic. The “Creating Criminals” interactive scenario will help users experience how AI tools work in a playful manner, creating an interactive online learning experience to help participants interrogate questions of privacy, equality, and fairness that emerge when AI is used in criminal justice and public safety systems. We will also create supplemental openly accessible text resources to provide basic background information on AI technology and uses in the criminal justice and public safety systems.

The idea: We want to create an interactive quiz-type program to help users will learn how specific characteristics or activities could lead an algorithm to label people as “risks” in a public safety context. Users will be prompted to select an avatar and then make a series of choices to develop the avatar’s character profile (e.g. employment/citizenship status, social media activity etc.). At the end of the exercise, a risk assessment will be revealed with an explanation of how the algorithm interpreted the user’s choices as having a positive or negative impact on their results.

The target audience: Our Remote Rights online rights education portal and the modules that populate it are designed to appeal to high school students and teachers; however, we hope they are also appropriate and accessible to the public at large.

The concept map: Check it out here!

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