Human Rights Awards

The Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission is seeking nominations for the 2023 Nova Scotia Human Rights Awards.

You can submit your nomination quickly and easily using this online form.

The commission presents awards annually to acknowledge the courageous work of Nova Scotians whose efforts as individuals or groups are helping to advance human rights in the province.

You are invited to nominate individual Nova Scotians and groups who demonstrate excellence in this area until November 3, 2023. Award recipients will be chosen by committee and notified in advance of a presentation ceremony held on December 8, 2023.

If you have any questions or require assistance to submit a nomination, please email


All Nominees must:

  • have not received an Award in the same category within the previous five (5) years,
  • espouse human rights values and not discriminate based on race, gender, disability or other protected characteristics of the Nova Scotia Human Rights Act,
  • include a component of education and leadership in their human rights-related work,
  • be a resident of Nova Scotia, and
  • not nominate themselves.

Additionally, nominees for a Group or Organization Award must:

  • be comprised of two (2) or more people, and
  • have operations in Nova Scotia.

Youth Award

Presented to an individual aged 20 or younger whose work promotes equity and inclusion, advances understanding of human rights and its importance in empowering youth to advocate for themselves, their peers, and their communities.

Individual Award

Presented to an individual aged 21 or older who demonstrates leadership and whose work has contributed to change in their community by advancing equity, inclusion, and the value in promoting and protecting human rights.

Dr. Burnley Allan “Rocky” Jones Award

Presented to an individual of African descent whose work reflects and builds upon the legacy of Dr. Burnley Allan “Rocky” Jones in championing racial equality, advancing justice and fostering socio-economic empowerment.  Learn about Rocky Jones.

Wel’lukwen Award

Presented to an L’nu individual (youth or adult), group or organization whose work advances the rights of Mi’kmaq/Indigenous people while creating a just, equitable and inclusive society. Wel-lukwen, (Well-loog-wen) is a Mi’kmaw word which loosely translates to mean “congratulations, you are doing extremely well. Your work does not go unrecognized.”

Group Award

Presented to a group or organization whose collective action serves to protect dignity, advance equity, promote inclusion, and raise awareness of human rights in Nova Scotia.

Submit a nomination using this online form.

Past Recipients


Read the announcement.

  • Elder Dr. Daniel N. Paul, Wel'lukwen Award
  • Grandmother Water Protectors, Wel'lukwen Award (group)
  • The Karma Closet, Youth Award (group)
  • Michael Tutton, Individual Award
  • Terena Fraicn, Individual Award
  • Stepping Stone, Group/Organization Award
  • Carolann Wright, Dr. Burnley Allan "Rocky" Jones Award


Read the cnnouncement.

  • Andreas Robinson, Halifax (Youth Award)
  • Steven Esty. Dartmouth (Individual Award)
  • Dr. Margaret Dechman, Howie Centre (post-humous, Individual Award)
  • Dr. Ron Milne, Halifax (Dr. Burnley Allan "Rockey" Jones Award)


Read the announcement.

  • Clayton Murphy, Halifax (Individual Award)
  • Pamela Brown, Halifax (Individual Award)
  • Elder Jane Meader, Membertou (Individual Award)
  • Association of Black Social Workers & Health Associaton of African Canadians (Group Award)
  • Preston Township Emergency Response Team (Group Award)


Read the announcement.
Human Rights Award Rescinded.

  • Cassidy Megan, Halifax (Youth Award)
  • Trayvone Clayton, Halifax (Dr. Burnley Allan "Rocky" Jones Award)
  • 902 ManUp, Group Award
  • African Nova Scotian Decade for Persons of African Descent Coalition, Group Award


Read the announcment.

  • Kardeisha Provo, North Preston (Youth Award)
  • Eric Smith, Halifax (Individual Award)
  • Huwaida Medani, Halifax (Individual Award)
  • DeRico Symonds, Halifax (Dr. Burnley Allan :Rocky" Jones Award)
  • Inverness Development Association, Inverness (Group Award)
  • South End Environmental Justice Society, Shelburne (Group Award)


Read the anouncement.

  • Joshua Cochrane, Yarmouth (Youth Awaed)
  • Angela Simmonds, Cherry Brook (Dr. Burnley Allan "Rocky" Jomnes Awaed)
  • Nicole Doria, Halifax (Individual Award)
  • Wade Smith, Halifax (post-humous, Individual Award)
  • Syria-Antigonish Families Embrace, Antigonish (Group Award)
  • Bill 59 Community Alliance (Group Award)
  • Women’s Wellness Within, Halifax


Read the announcement.

  • Samuel Gregan, Halifax (Youth Award)
  • David Leitch, Halifax (Dr.nBurnley Allan "Rocky" Jones Award)
  • El Jones, Halifax (Dr. Burnley Allan "Rocky" Jones Award)
  • Raymond Tynes, Truro (Dr. Burnley Allan "Rocky" Jones Award)
  • Alexa McDonough Institute, Mount Saint Vincent University, Halifax (Group Award)
  • Immigrant Settlement Association of Nova Scotia, Halifax (Group Award)