The Social Justice Awards are presented bi-annually to individuals and/or organizations that have demonstrated outstanding efforts and leadership in achieving social justice for Aboriginal women. The awards are hosted by the Aboriginal Commission on Human Rights and Justice (ACHR&J) and the Institute for the Advancement for Aboriginal Women (IAAW).
Past Recipients of the Social Justice Awards
IAAW and ACHR&J have honored the following recipients for their tireless efforts in bringing recognition to the injustices that have occurred to Aboriginal Women:
2001 - The first Social Justice Award was presented to Freeman Taylor, of the Edmonton Police Service, for solving the eight year old murder case of Joyce Cardinal. Taylor’s determination and sincerity for his pursuit of justice is to be recognized and admired.
2003 - Warren Goulding was presented with the Social Justice Award in 2003 for writing “Just Another Indian: A Serial Killer and Canada’s Indifference”. Goulding’s book depicted the story of a serial killer who preyed on Aboriginal Women.
2005 - Irene Khan, Secretary General of Amnesty International, was recognized for writing the report “Stolen Sisters: a Humans Response to Discrimination and Violence against Indigenous Women in Canada”. This report provided a scathing review of how violence, discrimination and social injustices committed against Aboriginal women is not a priority to our social and judicial systems. Khan was recognized for bringing awareness of violence against Aboriginal women to an international level.
2008 - Andrew Hanon, a columnist for the Edmonton Sun, was the recipient of the 2008 Social Justice Award. Hanon was presented the award for his fair, positive, and culturally appreciative attitude toward Aboriginal women that is seldomly represented within the media.
2009 - Robert Lee received the Social Justice Award for his legal advocacy and protection of Aboriginal children involved in the Child Welfare system. Lee is known among his colleagues as being compassionate, caring, and displays generosity towards disadvantaged people.
2012 - Robert Urbanowski, former RCMP officer, was recognized for reopening the case and solving the murder of Helen Betty Osborne. David Robertson, author of The Life of Helen Betty Osborne (2008), congratulates Robert Urbanowski by saying "In a time of indifference, he stood up and made a difference."
Social Justice Award Recipients