Published in Northern Starting XI
2020 is already a remarkable year for soccer players in North America. The Major League Soccer Players’ Association (MLSPA) won significant improvements to their collective agreement, including a higher wage budget, a share in media revenue, an increase in the minimum wage, and greater player mobility. The United Soccer League Players’ Association (USLPA) added USL League One players to its membership after voluntary recognition from the league, affording a collective voice to more players, many of whom suffer from well documented precarity and low wages. On the heels of these achievements, sources are indicating that Canadian Premier League (CanPL) players have begun organizing amongst themselves to form a union.
Coauthored with Kate Shao and Kennes Lin for Aljazeera
Shortly after the first Canadian case of the new coronavirus was announced in January, David Shao, a healthcare worker from Winnipeg, the capital of Manitoba province, was taunted by colleagues to go home and stop “spreading the virus”. He was not sick; he was, however, the only Chinese person in his workplace.
Fortier, C., & Hon-Sing Wong, E. (2019). The settler colonialism of social work and the social work of settler colonialism. Settler Colonial Studies, 9(4), 437-456.
The consolidation of the social work profession in Canada was critical to the settler colonial project. Parallel to the rise of the modern police force, the accounting bureaucracy, and the colonial legal apparatus, the social work profession is a foundational component to the creation, expansion, and adaptation of the settler state. Through a historical review of the origins of social work and its professionalization in Canada, this paper argues that contemporary social work and social service provision remain circumscribed by the logics of conquest, extraction, apprehension, management, and pacification that advance the settler project and seek to secure settler futurity. Given the incommensurabilities between social work practice and Indigenous processes of decolonization this paper explores potential pathways towards unsettling social work practice including disrupting dehistoricization (working towards the repatriation of Indigenous lands, children, and cultural traditions and the upholding of Indigenous sovereignty); working towards deinstitutionalization (challenging the institutionalization of service provision and re-focusing on mutual aid, treaty responsibilities, and settler complicity; and promoting deprofessionalization (the restructuring of the ‘helping’ practices of social work back under the control of communities themselves.
Wong, E. H. S. (2012). Not Welcome A Critical Analysis of Ableism in Canadian Immigration Policy from 1869 to 2011. Critical Disability Discourses/Discours critiques dans le champ du handicap, 4.
This paper examines the literature published by the Canadian National Committee for Mental Hygiene (CNCMH), a precursor to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), from 1918-1921, and its connection to eugenicist social policies. Specifically, this study involves a critical discourse analysis of the Canadian Journal of Mental Hygiene (CJMH) published by the CNCMH, which illustrates how the roots of Canada’s mental health field are linked to a nation-building project deeply intertwined with eugenicist notions of race and disability. Foundation myths that reinforce the Canadian nation were also imbued in the literature, including: Canadian identity as linked to white non-disability, Canada as tabula rasa, and eugenicist fears of the ‘over-population’ of ‘undesirables’. On the basis of these foundation myths, the CNCMH considered mental hygiene discourse and practice as a means to further Canada as a white nondisabled nation. The desire to further the Canadian nation in this manner led to the promotion of eugenicist social policies. Many of these policies – especially, immigration controls – were put into place by the Canadian government and remain to this day.
I also have a photo of some of the unsavoury characters that had staged a white supremacist counter protest. The flag the person is holding is the old Canadian red ensign.