The OJEN Twitter Moot is an online debate. Students from across Ontario participate in the discussion by tweeting their opinions either individually or in teams/classes. The OJEN committee in Hamilton came up with this fun and engaging justice education initiative for Hamilton-area schools. In the fall of 2020, for the first time, OJEN ran the program for high school students throughout Ontario.
The Twitter Moot offers students a fun opportunity to learn about an important and contentious legal issue. This spring, the OJEN Twitter Moot will take place on Tuesday, March 29th, from 9 am to 3 pm. Ontario students will debate:
Should a city be able to evict people living in tent encampments?
Tent encampments increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. In response, Canadian cities enforced bylaws that banned all permanent and temporary overnight shelters in city parks and authorized immediate evictions of encampment residents.
Encampment residents claimed that these bylaws infringed their rights to life, liberty, security of the person, and equality under sections 7 and 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
In preparing for this debate, students and teachers may wish to consider questions and issues such as:
- Moral arguments
- The purpose of the bylaws in question
- Whether the law should be kept, repealed or changed
- Whether the bylaws infringe residents’ section 7 Charter rights to life, liberty and security of the person?
- Whether the bylaws infringe residents’ section 15 Charter rights to equality?
- Whether any such violation is justified
How do students participate?
All the resources you need to take part in the Spring 2022 Twitter Moot will be posted below in the ‘Downloads’ section of this page!
Students need a twitter account to participate and a supervising teacher who registers them. OJEN will publish the Twitter Moot resources on its website during the week of March 1st. Online registration opens on Thursday, February 24th. Teachers register for this program anytime between February 24th and March 25th. By March 28th, they must provide a list of twitter handles that their students or student groups plan to use on the day of the Twitter Moot: March 29.
Students can create an individual twitter account, a team account or a class account. OJEN will only retweet and recognize twitter handles which are provided to us by a teacher. We encourage teachers to use the Twitter Moot as an in-class activity, but students can participate in the event as an extra-curricular activity, if they have a supervising teacher who registers them.
On March 29, 2022, from 9 am to 3 pm, students post their thoughts and comments on twitter using the hashtag #OJENROEJSP22 and mentioning @OJEN_ROEJ. Teachers can stream the debate in class by using a Smartboard/projector, or students can monitor and participate in the debate by checking out the #OJENROEJSP22 hashtag throughout the day. The hashtag allows everyone to see tweets from other students and teams and encourages a province-wide discussion.
On April 1, 2022, OJEN will select two winners, one based on the most persuasive tweet and the other based on overall contribution.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Past Twitter Moot materials