The HIV Legal Network’s Symposium on HIV, Law, and Human Rights is back for its 9th edition, and you’re invited! 

Join us on Thursday, June 17, for Hitting the Mark: Ending the HIV pandemic by realizing rights for people who use drugs — a free, virtual event that will examine Canada’s current reality and what needs to be done to achieve global targets and eventually overcome this decades-long public health challenge.

Register here

12:30 – 12:40 - Welcome (Richard Elliott, Executive Director, HIV Legal Network)

Opening (Elder Valerie Nicholson)

12:40 – 12:45 - Setting the scene: Global HIV targets and strategy, gaps and barriers in Canada (Symposium overview)   Richard Elliott, HIV Legal Network

12:45 – 2:15 - Decriminalization

Moderator: Richard Elliott, HIV Legal Network


  • Federal developments: Roundtable with lawmakers
    • Member of Parliament Nathaniel Erskine-Smith
    • Member of Parliament Don Davies
    • El Jones, educator/journalist/activist, member of the Health Canada Expert Task Force on Substance Use
  • Municipal and provincial developments
    • Vancouver and British Columbia – Caitlin Shane, Pivot Legal Society
    • Toronto – Councillor Joe Cressy, City of Toronto
    • Montreal – Sandhia Vadlamudy, Association des intervenants en dépendance du Québec (AIDQ)
  • Civil society: Common platform — A Decriminalization agenda for Canada
    • Sandra Ka Hon Chu, HIV Legal Network
    • Garth Mullins, Crackdown podcast
  • Q&A/Discussion

3:10 – 3:55 - Safe supply: Expanding models of delivery

Moderator: Corey Ranger, AVI Health and Community Services, HIV Legal Network Board of Directors


  • Defending access:
    • In Alberta – Avnish Nanda, Nanda & Company
  • Expanding access:
    • Consumer perspective – Shanell Twan, Alberta Addicts Who Educate and Advocate Responsibly (AAWEAR), Canadian Association of People who Use Drugs (CAPUD)
    • Prescriber perspective – Andrea Sereda, London InterCommunity Health Centre
    • Innovative delivery – MySafe Project video and remarks from Mark Tyndall
  • Q&A/Discussion

3:55 – 4:00 - Thank you and wrap up (Richard Elliott, HIV Legal Network)

Closing (Elder Valerie Nicholson)