Leilani Farha, Legal Advisor, is a leading expert and advocate on economic and social human rights, especially for women. She has a long history promoting the right to adequate housing, equality and non-discrimination in housing in Canada and internationally. Prior to joining Canada Without Poverty, Leilani was the Executive Director of the Centre for Equality Rights in Accommodation for 12 years. She has extensive experience addressing homelessness, poverty and inequality in Canada through advocacy, casework, litigation, research and community based work. She has been at the forefront of applying international human rights law to anti-poverty issues in Canada, and is known internationally for her work on housing rights and women’s economic and social rights. In 2014, she was appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council to the position of United Nations Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing.
Emilly Renaud, National Coordinator, joined CWP in August 2020. She holds a BA (hons) in Sociology and Anthropology from the University of Toronto and recently earned a Master of Public Administration from Queen’s University. Raised in Ottawa’s public housing, Emilly’s lived experience informs her work at CWP and her lifelong dedication to activism. As a youth, she worked with Ottawa’s Dandelion Dance Company, speaking out on issues like poverty, addiction and mental health, women’s and children’s rights, and ableism. Through this work, Emilly was invited as the Youth Representative to the annual meeting of the Coalition for the Rights of Children in 2011. In her academic career, Emilly has studied social, racial, and economic inequality in Canada, with a particular focus on Indigenous Governance. Emilly is committed to using governmental processes, policy, and law to promote systemic change and improve the lives of marginalized people in Canada.
Caitlin Sears, Fund Development and Finance Coordinator, joined CWP in November 2019. She studied English Literature at the University of Toronto and Carleton University. She has extensive experience in the non-profit sector in Ottawa, and a strong background in fundraising, writing, communications, event management, and non-profit administration. She is a passionate supporter of human rights, particularly the rights of women and girls. She is excited to join the team at CWP to focus on eradicating poverty in Canada.