NAN Congratulates Human Rights Award Recipient Madam Justice Renu Mandhane

Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler, on behalf of the Executive Council, congratulates Madam Justice Renu J. Mandhane, former Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission, who will be honoured today for her contributions to advancing human rights:

“While leading the Ontario Human Rights Commission, Renu was a strong and vocal advocate for the people of Nishnawbe Aski Nation and defender of the rights of many people across this province. It is very fitting that she is recognized on the United Nations’ Human Rights Day.

As Chief Commissioner, Renu led delegations across northern Ontario to learn about the systemic racism our members often face when they visit urban centres. She identified that reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Peoples requires dialogue, at the personal and institutional levels, and encouraged urban municipalities to facilitate those conversations.

Over the many years I have known her, Renu has remained steadfast in her pursuit of human rights and justice. After witnessing the dehumanizing conditions at the Thunder Bay District Jail last year she stood with us and spoke out on overcrowding, mental health issues, and the needs of Indigenous inmates.

Renu served Ontario well as Chief Commissioner and is an excellent addition to the judiciary. We congratulate and thank her for her many years of friendship and support.”

Renu Mandhane served as Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission from 2015 to 2020. She was appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in May 2020.

She will receive the 2020 International Commission of Jurists Canada’s Walter S. Tarnopolsky Human Rights Award in recognition of her outstanding contribution in the field of human rights during a virtual ceremony this afternoon. The Award recognizes individuals in the legal community, as well as institutions and organizations, for their outstanding national contributions in the field of human rights and civil liberties.

For more information please contact:
Michael Heintzman
Director of Communications
Office: (807) 625-4965
Cell: (807) 621-2790
mheintzman@nan.ca