UC Observer logo
UCObserver on SoundCloud UCObserver on YouTube UCObserver on Facebook UCObserver on Twitter UCObserver's RSS Feeds

Justice

Feature

July 2013

Hard time on the outside

By Richard Wright

Billions are spent getting tough on crime, but precious little is invested in supporting ex-convicts as they readjust to daily life. For too many former inmates, getting out of prison is like serving another sentence.

Feature

July 2013

Rwanda’s great turnaround

By Tim Johnson

Though the genocide of two decades ago will never be forgotten, the tiny country has surged ahead, becoming one of the safest and most financially robust nations in Africa

Feature

June 2013

Standing up to big gold

By Roxana Olivera

A fight pitting Indigenous Peruvians against a multinational mining company highlights the real cost of the global boom in precious metals

Feature

June 2013

The right kind of trouble

By Mardi Tindal

Being the United Church can sometimes get uncomfortable. The former moderator reflects on the risks and rewards of public witness.

Feature

May 2013

Buy. Wear. Toss.

By Susan Peters

In the developed world, clothing has never been cheaper. But do overstuffed wardrobes make fashion victims of us all?

Feature

April 2013

The ugly Internet

By Kasia Mychajlowycz

Online misogyny is running rampant. Critics say that hate is hate, whether it’s expressed on the street corner or in cyberspace.

Feature

April 2013

The Nisga'a experiment

By Richard Wright

Owning land is a Canadian right — unless you live on a reserve. Now, a First Nation in British Columbia is rewriting the rules. Will property rights for Aboriginals bring prosperity or assimilation?

Feature

March 2013

Making amends with Malawi

By Pieta Woolley

Backpacking in southern Africa 13 years ago, the writer vowed to raise money for AIDS orphans. She never did, but she also never forgot. Haunted by guilt, she returned last fall to pay her debt.

Feature

March 2013

Embracing our Aboriginal sisters

By Julie McGonegal

Colonizers targeted Indigenous women by undermining their leadership and stealing their children. Perhaps it's time to recover the power and potential of Aboriginal women

Feature

February 2013

The other survivors

By Pieta Woolley

Former students are not the only victims of residential schools. Their children — and their children’s children — also bear the scars of broken families and shattered communities.

Feature

February 2013

Becoming Ruth Wood

By Trisha Elliott

Terry and Anne Wood had a normal married life. All of that changed when Terry, a lay minister, realized he was a woman trapped in a man’s body.

Feature

January 2013

Refuge on Bloor Street

By Chantal Braganza

A Toronto church welcomes an influx of refugees fleeing poverty and repression in North Korea

Feature

January 2013

Manning up

By Evie Ruddy

Almost 40,000 Canadian women were abused by their spouses in 2010. Bruce Wood is part of a movement helping men work through their inner demons.

Feature

January 2013

Change maker

By Samantha Rideout

Samantha Nutt has never been one to pull punches. It’s what makes her a human rights heavyweight.

Feature

November 2012

Cold comfort

By Chelsea Temple Jones

Out of the Cold programs shelter untold thousands every winter. Their success points to a bigger failure: society’s chronic indifference to poverty.

Feature

October 2012

War without end

By Karen Stiller

Each day, refugee camps in South Sudan swell with hundreds of new arrivals as old conflicts continue to rock the world’s newest nation

Feature

September 2012

Uncivil disobedience

By Kasia Mychajlowycz

Is an aversion to leadership allowing a violent minority to hijack the message of today’s mass youth movements?

Feature

June 2012

Where credit’s due

By Susan Peters

How an underprivileged Winnipeg neighbourhood fought back after the big banks up and left

Feature

June 2012

Tough on crime, weak on evidence

By Edward L. Greenspan

One of Canada’s top defence lawyers picks apart the government’s case for more prisons and longer sentences

Feature

May 2012

Three partners, one family

By Pieta Woolley

Feature

May 2012

Handmaids no more

By Laurel Walton

We were young, unmarried and pregnant. They forced us to surrender our babies. Now we're older, braver and determined to change an adoption system that still favours the privileged.

Feature

April 2012

Reconciling to a Hard Truth

By Richard Wright

An adjudication process set up to compensate residential school survivors has been flooded with thousands of new claims. The numbers suggest that abuse was far more common than anyone imagined.

Feature

March 2012

Seven innovations for a better world

By Karen Stiller

These clever fixes may not solve all of humanity’s problems, but they promise to improve the lives of millions

Feature

March 2012

First United’s time of trial

By Pieta Woolley

Resignations, looming funding cuts and bad press have forced a historic United Church mission to rethink its role in Canada’s poorest neighbourhood

Feature

February 2012

Caught in the bottleneck

By Carolyn Morris

New limits on refugee applications are meant to relieve a backlog of unprocessed claims. Churches fear the cap will undo the sponsorship program that has helped thousands flee to safety in Canada.

Feature

January 2012

Could Pathways work on reserves?

By Richard Wright

Feature

January 2012

Dropping in

By Richard Wright

Pathways to Education is a tutoring program that helps low-income students graduate from high school. Manitoba educators are hoping the innovative approach will also reduce dropout rates among First Nations students.

Feature

January 2012

El Salvador’s journey of redemption

By Tim Johnson

Two decades ago, civil war raged in Central America’s smallest country. Visitors today will discover that while the scars remain, the healing power of peace is stronger.

Feature

January 2012

A taste of tolerance

By Cory Ruf

Fleeing persecution in Europe, Roma refugees are building new lives in Canada. But their welcome here is far from guaranteed.

Feature

November 2011

Photo essay: After apartheid

By Kevin Spurgaitis

Twenty years after South Africa abolished its race laws, residents of its most populous township still struggle to get by in a deeply unequal society.

Promotional Image

Editorials

David Wilson%

Observations

by David Wilson

Enclaves of the elderly

Promotional Image

Video

ObserverDocs: A shoulder to lean on

by Observer Staff

Sheima Benembarek was born in Saudi Arabia, grew up in Morocco and moved to Canada in 2005. In 2015, she relocated to Toronto. At first, the city seemed so much bigger, impersonal — and even threatening — until a fateful encounter in the subway one day.

Promotional Image

Faith

January 2017

Presbytery turns down bid to halt Vosper hearing

by Mike Milne

World

February 2017

Many faces, one humanity

by Wade Davis

The words and photographs of the Canadian author and explorer capture the richness — and fragility — of global cultures and rituals

Society

February 2017

An anatomy of hate

by Douglas Tindal

It’s on the rise everywhere. The writer explores our most troubling emotion and asks how we might overcome it.

World

February 2017

Many faces, one humanity

by Wade Davis

The words and photographs of the Canadian author and explorer capture the richness — and fragility — of global cultures and rituals

Society

January 2017

The new agrarians

by Lois Ross

In the next 15 years, almost half of Canadian farms will change hands. Meet seven millennials who view agriculture as a career — and moral calling.

Faith

March 2016

The Walrus Talks Spirituality

by Observer Staff

Promotional Image