Prix Droits et Libertés
2022 edition: Our Planet, Our Rights!
The Commission chose to promote the right to a healthy environment, which is enshrined in section 46.1 of the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. Under the theme "Our Planet, Our Rights", this year's award seeks to recognize initiatives that champion the right to a healthy environment, environmental justice and the fight against climate change.
Three finalists have been selected by the members of the jury. Learn more about them on this page and vote for your favorite.
The winning initiative will be announced at the award ceremony on December 7 in Montréal.
Prix coup de cœur du public
Vote for your favorite initiative!
Finalists and special mention
Recognition of the rights of Muteshekau-shipu, the Magpie River
An initiative that aims to have the Magpie River recognised as a legal entity to better preserve it and protect it from any industrial development project - a first in Quebec and Canada. Located on the Côte-Nord, the Magpie River is known worldwide for whitewater activities. This initiative was led by the Muteshekau-shipu Alliance and is based on the leadership and legal powers of local indigenous and non-indigenous communities. It resulted in the adoption of two parallel resolutions that grant the river nine legal rights, including the right to flow naturally, to maintain its biodiversity and to take legal action.
Canopée et biodiversité Saguenay
Led by EURÊKO, this initiative takes concrete action to create healthy environments and to increase people’s resilience to the impacts of climate change. It consists in creating islands of freshness through greening and demineralisation, increasing the urban canopy and conserving and even densifying green spaces. Thus, several trees are planted, food forests and vegetable gardens are created as well as rain gardens. These actions are implemented in a participatory manner and are carried out primarily in disadvantaged communities that are vulnerable to extreme heat.
Mères au front
A citizens' movement of mothers and grandmothers who are concerned about the world we are leaving to future generations. Together, they are reframing the climate and environmental emergency around the most precious thing they have to protect: Their commitment and actions aim to ensure that all governments (municipal, provincial and federal) take responsibility and act on the environmental emergency. The movement has nearly 30 local groups in Quebec, as well as in French-speaking Canada and Belgium, and has nearly 10,000 supporters.
La ligne verte
An initiative set up by the Centre québécois du droit de l'environnement. This is a legal information line that offers free specialised and accessible information on environmental law. It provides information to the general public, as well as to environmental protection groups, elected officials and journalists. It enables people to be better equipped to take concrete action to uphold their right to live in a healthy environment that respects biodiversity.
Members of the jury
Professor of Law at Université Laval, Canada Research Chair in Environmental Law
Paule Halley is a full professor at the Faculty of Law of Université Laval where she teaches environmental law. She holds the Canada Research Chair in Environmental Law and is the author of numerous articles and books on environmental law and sustainable development. Her work has been honoured with several awards, including the Prix Michel-Jurdant en sciences de l'environnement (2012), the Prix scientifique de la Francophonie (2005) and the "Best Monograph" award from the Quebec Bar Foundation for her book entitled "Le droit pénal de l'environnement" (2003). In 2021, she co-edited a new book entitled "L'environnement au tribunal" which addresses contemporary issues of environmental legal protection and possible solutions.
Climate Policy Analyst at the David Suzuki Foundation, COP 25 Spokesperson
Léa Ilardo is a climate policy analyst at the David Suzuki Foundation and a board member of ENvironnement JEUnesse (ENJEU). She holds a Master's degree in Applied Political Studies from the Université de Sherbrooke. Léa collaborates with various media, including 24 heures, to address environmental issues. Her academic background has led her to work on public health issues related to climate change as well as on the theme of intergenerational equity. In 2019, she participated in the 25th Conference of the Parties on Climate (COP25) as a member of the UdeS and ENJEU delegations. In addition, she co-founded the collective La planète s'invite à l'Université, now known as the Coalition étudiante pour un virage environnemental et social (CEVES), part of the global student climate strike movement.
Senior advisor for relations with First Peoples at the Université de Montréal, COP 26 spokesperson
Samuel Rainville is an Innu member of the Pessamit community and a Quebecker. Senior advisor for relations with First Peoples at the Université de Montréal, he ensures the implementation of the institutional action plan "Place aux Premiers Peuples 2020-20203". He sits on various committees where he contributes to organizational change strategies by ensuring the representation of the First Peoples' perspective, notably the Indigenous Advisory Committee of the Société du parc Jean-Drapeau, and the Board of Directors of the Société pour la nature et les parcs (SNAP). He also combines his professional experience with graduate training in environmental education. He is particularly interested in the valorization of indigenous knowledge and the process of identity affirmation as pillars of an indigenous eco-citizenship.
Retired professor in psycho-education at UQAT
Bruno Sioui holds a master's degree in special education-psychoeducation and a doctorate in social work. He has been an associate professor at the teaching and research unit in human and social development sciences at the Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue since 2007. He was also a lecturer and professor in the psycho-education department at the Université de Sherbrooke (1994-2007). He was a psychoeducator at the Centre de développement et de formation de la main-d'oeuvre huron-wendat (2000-2004) and at the Centre jeunesse de Québec (1980-2000).
President of the CDPDJ
Prior to his appointment to the Commission, Philippe-André Tessier was head of the labour law group at Robinson Sheppard Shapiro, as a lawyer and as a Certified Industrial Relations Advisor (CIRA). A graduate of the Université de Montréal, he is a member of the Quebec Bar and the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés. Named in "The Best Lawyers" since 2012, his practice focuses on labour and employment law for both federal and provincial companies. Very active in his professional order, he has been president of the Young Bar Association of Montreal, secretary and treasurer of the Montreal Bar Council as well as a member of the Executive Committee and the General Council of the Quebec Bar. He was also a member and secretary of the board of directors of Éducaloi and was, until his appointment, chairman of the board of the Société québécoise d'information juridique.
The Prix Droits et Libertés
Since 1988, the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse has awarded the Prix Droits et Libertés each year to an organization or an individual as a public recognition for exceptional achievement or commitment to the defence of human rights and freedoms.
Recipients of the Prix Droits et LIbertés
Many inspiring individuals, organizations, projects and initiatives have been recognized by the Award since 1988. Learn more about each of them in this page.