Petition Closed

Permanently Honouring Canada's Diversity at Gowlings Hall

This petition had 1,943 supporters

UPDATE (February 2, 2018):

The support for this petition has been overwhelming - thank you to everyone who has signed!

The next step for this initiative:

Osgoode's Black Law Students Association (BLSA) held a public forum last night to discuss the defacement that occurred in Gowlings Hall and to plan next steps for action, which will be published soon in the form of a list of recommendations. This petition will refer signatories to the BLSA’s recommendations, which are grounded in community consultation with Black students at Osgoode and are much more comprehensive in scope.

Please follow and support the BLSA at the following links:


Two Black History Month posters were defaced at Osgoode Hall Law School on January 31, 2018. The posters, which were located in Gowlings Hall, depicted Canada's first Black legal professionals and other accomplished Black Canadians. The eyes of the individuals in the posters were scratched out.

When it isn't Black History Month, Osgoode's building is filled with class portraits depicting at least 100 years worth of white faces - all faces deemed worth celebrating. Defacing those two posters isn't just symbolic; it sends a loud and clear message that Black faces don't belong there. 

We're asking to have the following faces permanently framed and prominently placed in Gowlings Hall:
- Canada's first Black legal professionals, including Robert Sutherland, Abraham Beverley Walker, Delos Rogest Davis and others.
- Canada's first Indigenous legal professionals, including Alfred Scow, William Wuttunnee, Norman Lickers  and others.
- Canada's first women legal professionals, particularly women of colour and Indigenous women such as Roberta Jamieson, Delia Opekokew, Violet King Henry and others.
- Legal pioneers from Canada's various immigrant communities, such as Gretta Wong Grant, Kew Dock Yip, Joseph Atallah Ghiz and others.

The struggle of these early pioneers paved the way for the rest of us - most of us wouldn't be here if it weren't for them. Let's honour them - permanently.

More information:

Robert Sutherland:

Abraham Beverley Walker:

Delos Rogest Davis:

Alfred Scow:

William Wuttunnee:

Norman Lickers:

Roberta Jamieson:

Delia Opekokew:

Violet King Henry:

Gretta Wong Grant:

Kew Dock Yip:

Joseph Atallah Ghiz:


Today: Lisa is counting on you

Lisa Durnford needs your help with “Osgoode Hall Law School: Permanently Honouring Canada's Diversity at Gowlings Hall”. Join Lisa and 1,942 supporters today.