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December 10, 2007
Human rights activists receive City awards
“Toronto is a city that supports an atmosphere of respect and dignity. That absolute commitment to respect and dignity has served us well,” said Mayor David Miller this evening at the City’s annual Human Rights Awards ceremony. Speaking to a large audience packed into the Council Chamber, Mayor Miller called upon human rights activists to continue their work. “Our success as a city will come from your active engagement with your government in everything that we do.”

Mayor Miller was joined by Councillors Paul Ainslie, Sandra Bussin, Shelley Carroll, Janet Davis, Adrian Heaps, Pam McConnell, Joe Mihevc, Gord Perks, Kyle Rae, Michael Thompson and Adam Vaughan to make presentations to community activists for their human rights volunteer work.

Nine residents and two organizations received awards. Their work is contributing to the elimination of violence, racism, sexism, homophobia, homelessness, hate crimes, hunger, poverty and illiteracy in Toronto. The 2007 recipients of the Access, Equity and Human Rights Awards are:

• Aboriginal Affairs Award - Elder Vern Harper
• Access Award for Disability Issues - Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre
• Constance E. Hamilton Award on the Status of Women - June Larkin, Helen Liu and Beverley Wybrow
• Pride Award for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two Spirited Issues - Deb Parent, Rupert Raj, and Central Toronto Youth Services
• William P. Hubbard Award for Race Relations - Afua Cooper, Anne Gloger, and Kevin Lee

Biographies of the recipients are available at

December is Human Rights month in Toronto. This annual ceremony marks December 10, Human Rights Day, when the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. The Declaration recognizes the inherent dignity, and equal and intrinsic rights of all people.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won more than 70 awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contact:

Ceta Ramkhalawansingh, Manager, Diversity Management and Community Engagement, Strategic and Corporate Policy/Healthy City Office, City Manager’s Office, 416-392-6824,



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