OHRC announces locations for Right to Read public hearings — beginning January 14

TORONTO – The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) has announced locations and participation details for its Right to Read public hearings in Brampton, London, Thunder Bay and Ottawa, where students, parents and other stakeholders can share their stories and lived experiences related to reading disabilities.

The Right to Read public hearings will run from 6 to 9 p.m., with registration beginning at 5:30 p.m. at all locations.

January 14, 2020:            Brampton

Chris Gibson Recreation Centre
125 McLaughlin Rd N, Brampton, ON, L6X 1Y7

January 29, 2020:            London

Amethyst Demonstration School Auditorium
1515 Cheapside Street, London, ON, N5V 3N9

February 25, 2020:          Thunder Bay

Public Library – Waverley Community Hub Auditorium
285 Red River Road, Thunder Bay, ON, P7B 1A9

March 10, 2020:              Ottawa

Nepean Sportsplex
1701 Woodroffe Avenue, Nepean, ON, K2G 1W2

Members of the public can participate in three ways:

  • Filling out a survey at least two weeks before the hearing they want to participate in and being selected to make a presentation up to seven minutes long
  • Attending a public hearing and registering to speak for three minutes during the “open mic” session
  • Attending a public hearing to observe.

An inquiry panel, composed of Chief Commissioner Renu Mandhane and inquiry lawyers will hear the presentations on issues identified in the inquiry terms of reference. Full details on how to participate are available on the OHRC website.

“The OHRC is conducting a public inquiry to find out if students with reading disabilities have meaningful access to education as required by the Ontario Human Rights Code,” said Chief Commissioner Renu Mandhane. “I encourage these students and their parents and other stakeholders throughout Ontario to complete the survey, and participate in our public hearings.”

Since the OHRC launched the Right to Read inquiry in October, it has heard from more than 400 individuals. The OHRC launched a survey for students with reading disabilities and their parents and guardians, available on the OHRC website. The OHRC has also invited students to submit art, poetry, sound or video exploring experiences of reading disabilities, literacy and the right to read to the OHRC at communications@ohrc.on.ca.

The OHRC will release a formal report on findings and recommendations later in 2020.