Yes, I have not posted much recently; this is mostly because I’ve been travelling and have had irregular internet access. More on that in a bit. I’d like to draw everyone’s attention (but particularly that of my Canadian readers) to the fact that Bill C-279, “An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression)”, has been re-introduced in the House of Commons. I’ve written about this bill’s earlier incarnation—which passed in the House but didn’t make it through the Senate before Parliament was dissolved for the last election—on a couple of occasions before. It would add discrimination based on gender identity and expression to the list of things explicitly not allowed under the criminal code. Previously, cases of discrimination against trans-identified people have been treated as cases of sex discrimination, but this label is technically wrong—and transphobia has a way of slipping through cracks in the legal system. A solid legal protection for the rights of trans people under Canadian law is sorely needed. If you haven’t already, I urge you to contact your MP and ask them to support Bill C-279. Make sure you get a clear response from them! If you’ve moved between ridings, or there’s a new MP for your riding since the last election, I would especially encourage you to speak to them about this bill. While this bill has made it through the House before, that was not under a Conservative majority.
On a related note, I first heard about the resurrection of this bill at Sincerely, Natalie Reed, a blog with which I have recently fallen madly in love. It even has unicorns. Go read it.
Now for an update on Helikonios’ whereabouts, for the curious. I survived Peru and took another rainforest bird job in Hawaii. This probably sounds like a plush job to you, and I certainly am not complaining, but I’d like to point out before you get out your violins that I’m now working in one of the rainiest places on earth. It gets something like 11 metres of rain a year. I’m here for four months (or about 2.75 metres of rain, assuming it’s constant throughout the year) and plan to post about the natural history of Hawaii and some of the daunting conservation issues going on here somewhat regularly. My work requires me to spend 9 days at a time in the field without internet access, though, so don’t expect these to be super frequent.