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Virtual conference
  • May 26-28, 2021 from 12:00pm to 12:00pm

The University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics is this year’s host for the 2021 Canadian Bioethics Society Annual Conference “Behind the Mask: Ethical Issues Revealed by COVID-19 in Canada and Beyond.”
The virtual event will be held from May 26-28.

The theme is intended to capture issues and concerns both created by and exacerbated by the pandemic. These may include the roots of social and health inequity that perpetuate racism and oppression, the governmental responses to the pandemic, and those issues that may be endemic to the field of bioethics itself.

Who should attend the conference:

This conference will be a success if we engage a range of conversations and collaborations between bioethicists, scientists, subject matter experts, anti-racism/anti-oppression advocates, and those affected by or influencing the work of all of the above. As the CBS 2021 Local Organizing Committee, we would like to extend an invitation to all consumers of healthcare, those affected by structural oppression, and those connected to healthcare ethics to attend and share a space conducive to respectful dialogue, learning and debate.

Conference plenary speakers:

May 26 – Opening keynote on Centering on our common humanity: Reflecting on human rights within the COVID-19 crisis:

– Sharifah Sekalala, Associate Professor, School of Law, University of Warwick

This keynote questions the utility of human rights within global health crises. In the past year, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, States have taken unprecedented measures that infringe on civil, political, economic and social liberties. The effects of these measures have been very different for different groups both nationally but also globally. I will sketch out the potential of human rights in addressing public health crises, but also draw attention to its limits. Moving from the norms and principles of human rights that are necessary in guiding government responses to the COVID-19 crisis, I will attempt to rethink how human rights could create fairer societies beyond the crisis.

May 27 – Panel on Using Data and AI to Mitigate Bias and Inequities:

– Nadine Caron, Professor, Surgery and First Nations Health Authority Chair in Cancer and Wellness, University of British Columbia
– Yann Joly, Associate Professor, McGill University
– Andrew Pinto, Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health

May 28 – Panel on Re-envisioning Bioethics Education for Social Justice:

– Rosemarie Garland-Thomson, Professor Emerita, Emory College of Arts and Sciences
– Caroline Lidstone-Jones, Chief Executive Officer, Indigenous Primary Health Care Council
– Keisha Ray, Centre for Humanities and Ethics, McGovern Medical School, University of Texas

May 28 – Closing keynote on Reflections on Ethical Challenges during the Pandemic:

– Bartha Knoppers, Full Professor, Canada Research Chair in Law and Medicine; Director of the Centre of Genomics and Policy, Faculty of Medicine at McGill University & 2021 Recipient of the CBS-SCB Lifetime Achievement Award

Registration is open until the day of the conference!