Race, racism, and health: emerging data on the Canadian Story 

Date: Sept 17, 2018

The talk: The association between racism and health is well established, primarily through research from the United States. Researchers are increasingly engaging in understanding racial inequalities in health in Canada. This talk will explore some of the emergent findings from Canadian research, their interpretations, and related issues.

Speaker: Dr. Arjumand Siddiqi is Canada Research Chair in Population Health Equity and Associate Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, where she also holds appointments in the Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine and the Hospital For Sick Children, as well as at the Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Dr. Siddiqi is interested in understanding how societal conditions produce and resolve inequities in population health and human development across the lifespan. Her research focuses primarily on the roles of resource inequities and social policies, the methods and metrics that enable scientific inquiry on health inequities and, mechanisms related to public and political uptake of the evidence. Dr. Siddiqi is an alumnus of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research Global Academy and former Associate Member of its Program on Successful Societies. She was also a member of the World Health Organization’s Commission on Social Determinants of Health Knowledge Hub on Early Child Development, and has consulted to several international agencies including the World Bank and UNICEF. Dr. Siddiqi received her doctorate in Social Epidemiology from Harvard School of Public Health.

Different approaches to death and dying

Panelists Sun Drews and Marco Mascarin will discuss different ways to navigate death and dying both inside and outside of hospitals. They will offer concrete strategies for health care providers who wish to support a range of approaches to end-of-life care.

When: Sept 10 2018


Leonard Benoit is Qalipu Mi’Kmag, his people come from the territory of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Leonard has an Ontario Nursing license and has been practicing for the last 17 years. He has worked in acute care, community care and corrections. During his nursing career he has won many awards, including a nomination for the Nightingale Nursing Award of Excellence. He currently volunteers as a nurse at the Toronto People with Aids Foundation.

Leonard has completed a Community Services Worker program which he has married to his nursing. This allows him to hold the position of Aboriginal Patient Navigation Specialist with Cancer Care Ontario (Toronto Aboriginal Cancer Program), through which he provides a variety of supports to Indigenous community members who are on their cancer journey. Leonard will complete his studies to be a Death Doula in September, 2018.


Sun Drews is the co-founder of the International Death Symposium and worked as a funeral director in downtown Toronto for over eight years.

After making thousands of funeral arrangements she found herself questioning the status quo and our larger system that seemed to be failing people at the end of their lives. She has since pursued education and training as a death doula and mediator to support individuals and communities in navigating challenges that arise around dying and death.

Marco Mascarin PhD RP has been involved in various educational initiatives concerned with end of life care – foremost with the Contemplative End of Life Care program at the Institute of Traditional Medicine offered in Toronto and Calgary.

In his private practice he supports grieving individuals and facilitates Grief circles throughout the year.

Previous Events at the Centre for Urban Health Solutions