N.L. residents nominated for 2016 Human Rights Award

Published on December 6, 2016
Newfoundland and Labrador Human Rights Commission

The Human Rights Commission of Newfoundland and Labrador announced nominees for the 2016 Human Rights Awards this afternoon.

The annual awards recognize individuals who have made and/or continue to make meaningful contributions to advancing and furthering human rights in the province.

The winners will be announced at a ceremony at Government House in St. John’s on Thursday.

The timing of the presentation coincides with International Human Rights Day on Saturday.

The recipients will receive a specially commissioned sculpture designed and carved by Wilson Semigak, a Labrador soapstone carver.

The nominees are:

- Sarah Anala, an Inuk elder and former resident of Nain. 

- Justin Brake, an independent journalist, reporter and editor for TheIndependent.ca.

 - Mark Gruchy, a St. John’s lawyer with a lived experience of mental illness. 

- Lorraine Hearn, one of the founding members of the Status of Women Central, which offers front line services to women in Grand-Falls Windsor.

- Gemma Hickey, a widely known St. John’s-based activist and up-and-coming poet.

- Bryan Johnson, a recognized leader in the province’s deaf community.

- Sheldon Pollett, the executive director of Choices for Youth, an organization that works with hundreds of at-risk youth throughout the province. 

- Kyle Rees, a St. John’s lawyer who has advocated in many high-profile cases dealing with the decriminalization of doctor-assisted suicide and the rights of transgender people.