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Hate Free Muskoka: Recognize and Respond to Hate in Our Community

Join us for the first Hate Free Muskoka event on November 5, 2022 at the Rene Caisse Theatre in Bracebridge (100 Clearbrook Trail) featuring four leading anti-hate speakers and a panel on Rising Up to the Challenge. Topics include how to be an upstander in our community, the gifts of the Seven Grandfathers, Trans-inclusion, and cultural competency. An afternoon panel entitled “Rising Up to the Challenge” will be presented by the District of Muskoka’s IDEA Advisory Group chair and feature prominent members of the public and private sector.

Speakers in the morning include:

Bernie Farber (Human Rights Advocate) – This talk will be a historical journey detailing some of those elements within Canadian society that engage in extremism, bigotry and hatred. The journey ends with methods in which we as citizens can do the right thing and become “Upstanders” in difficult times.

Kelly Brownbill (Indigenous Awareness Educator) – This presentation focuses on the gifts we have as a people and how to utilize them in a modern context. Uplifting and hopeful, it’s a broad strokes blueprint for recovering from the past and embracing the future. Equally effective for people of all races and backgrounds, it can be the first brick in a bridge to reform relationships that are in tatters after generations of assimilation policies.

Michelle Emson (Gender Diversity Consultant)- Michelle’s presentation will have a particular focus on 2SLGBTQI and specifically Trans inclusion.

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The afternoon includes a speaker and panel:

Shelly Skinner (Uplift Black) – With a focus on establishing an environment as a leader that allows the serving community to thrive by creating a space that is healthy, brave and courageous, her talk will focus on cultural competency and awareness as the root of all Diversity, Equality and Inclusion work and how everyone has the ability to become a co-conspirator for systemic change regardless of their position in the community.

Rising Up to the Challenge Panel: A panel featuring Ricky Veerappan, Director of the Respect, Inclusion, Leadership Division of the OPP; Tina Kilboune of the District of Muskoka; Jennifer Johnston, Superintendent of Learning at the Trillium Lakelands District School Board; and Eva Zachary, Executive Director of Muskoka Victim Services. The panel will be moderated by Mark Nakamura, Chair of the District of Muskoka’s Inclusion, Diversity, Equality and Anti-racism Advisory Group.

Lunch provided

Coffee, Tea and breakfast snacks will be provided as well as lunch. Registration is welcome but not necessary.

Families with children of all ages and abilities are welcome to attend the event. Accessible washrooms are available. A break out/quiet room will be available for those who need a safe space during the day.

Free Shuttle Details

A shuttle bus is offered free of charge leaving in the morning and afternoon from Huntsville and Gravenhurst. The Huntsville bus departs from beside the Pharmasave (29 Main Street East) at 8:15 am and 1:00 pm and the Gravenhurst bus departs from the Shopper’s Drug Mart (511 Muskoka Road South) on the same schedule. Return trips will be made at the end of the day and at lunch break for those who are unavailable to stay the whole day.


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