An open letter to Minister Zach Churchill of Health and Wellness asks that the province remove barriers that may stop migrant workers with temporary status, refugee claimants, and others with precarious legal status from accessing a COVID-19 vaccine. We speak with two of the letter’s authors. They’re not asking for much, but small changes would make a huge difference, they say.

Media release: On April 2, news broke of a video, apparently taken by a corrections officer and posted on the social media site snapchat. The video shows an imprisoned woman with an insulting, dehumanizing caption and refers to the woman as a person with diabetes. The video is an affront to the filmed woman’s dignity and rights to privacy and confidentiality. It also raises grave concerns about the clinical care that prisoners are receiving at CNSCF, the responsibility of NS Health, and of how their health care needs are perceived by correctional staff employed by the Department of Justice.

Press release issued by Wellness Within: “Bill 22, which will allow for the removal of mandatory minimum sentences for some offences and the partial decriminalization of substance use, is simply inadequate, and will not meaningfully address the overpolicing and overincarceration of people who use drugs nor prevent overdose deaths. We join with other advocates in demanding the full abolition of mandatory sentences, decriminalization of all drugs, and respect for the autonomy of people who use drugs. “

Martha Paynter: “For the most part, the people in prison in Canada have now gone 11 months without a visit from family. Visits in most federal prisons are currently banned. The organization I volunteer with has not been inside a correctional facility to facilitate programming since March 2020.”