Renu Mandhane Receives the 2018 Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award

Renu Mandhane Receives the 2018 Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award

December 5, 2018

Toronto, December 5, 2018 – Today, Dr. Ivan Zinger, Correctional Investigator of Canada, is pleased to announce that Ms. Renu Mandhane, Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC), is the 2018 recipient of the Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award.

“In a distinguished career, Ms. Mandhane has brought public attention to correctional practices that are discriminatory or violate the human rights of prisoners, including federally sentenced women, Indigenous people, persons with mental health disabilities and immigration detainees,” said Dr. Zinger.  “As Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission, Renu has become a leading voice on national and provincial efforts to end the use of solitary confinement.  I am extremely pleased to recognize and celebrate Renu’s contributions to improving corrections and protecting the human rights of incarcerated people.”

Renu Mandhane was appointed Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission in October 2015.  She is the former Executive Director of the award-winning International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.  She has an LL.M in international human rights law from New York University. Renu began her practice focused on criminal law, and in that capacity she represented many survivors of sexual violence and prisoners.  Renu sits on the Canada Committee of Human Rights Watch, and has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada and the United Nations.  Most recently, Renu was recognized by Canadian Lawyer magazine as one of Canada’s most influential lawyers for her advocacy related to solitary confinement.

The Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award was established in honour of Mr. Ed McIsaac, who served as Executive Director of the Office of the Correctional Investigator for 18 years.  Each recipient of the award receives a reproduction of a sculpture by Ms. Audrey Greyeyes, a Cree artist from Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, entitled Medicine Man. It symbolizes wisdom, clarity of thought, and leadership, traits reflecting Mr. McIsaac’s character and career.

The ceremony will take place this afternoon in Toronto, Ontario.  Presented annually since 2009, there have been nine other recipients of the award.

Details on nomination procedures for the Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award are available on the Office’s website at http://www.oci-bec.gc.ca/cnt/award-prix/nom-eng.aspx.

Forum of Canadian Ombudsman