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From Trinidad and Tobago to Global Advocacy

Nicholas Marcus Thompson at far left at age 4 with brother and great-grandmother.

Nicholas's journey from the disadvantaged communities of Piparo and Morvant in Trinidad and Tobago to the international stage is one of resilience and tenacity. Born into poverty and violence, he faced adversity from all angles, including racism and prejudice. Despite these challenges, Nicholas's determination led him to Canada as a teenager, where he continued to confront racial discrimination and advocate for the rights of marginalized groups. His efforts have made a lasting impact on society.

Nicholas Marcus Thompson at age 4 far left sitting with mother and siblings.

Pioneering Advocacy and Legislative Achievements

Nicholas's advocacy has been instrumental in Canada's historic proposed recognition of Black people in employment equity legislation. This milestone aligns with the UN Decade for People of African Descent, ensuring equal opportunities for generations of workers and significantly advancing the fight for justice and equality. His unwavering dedication to advancing the rights and recognition of people of African descent has earned him global respect and admiration.

In 2020, Nicholas spearheaded a groundbreaking $2.5 billion class action lawsuit against systemic discrimination within the federal public service. His relentless advocacy led to the creation of anti-racism secretariats in many government departments and a more accurate self-identification process for employment equity data collection.

Labor Movement and Leadership Roles

Nicholas Marcus Thompson at a protest.

Nicholas's involvement in the labor movement has been transformative.  He has served as President of the Union of Taxation Employees Toronto North, advocating tirelessly for workers' rights at the Canada Revenue Agency. His leadership extended to roles such as 2nd A/Regional Executive Vice President, Vice President of the Greater Toronto Area Council, and Chair of the Toronto Racially Visible Committee at the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC).

Nicholas also played a critical role in addressing systemic racism within PSAC, Canada’s largest public-sector union. His efforts were highlighted during a significant incident involving the resignation of two senior leaders due to the handling of allegations of anti-Black racism. This incident emphasized the ongoing challenges of systemic racism within the union and underscored the need for internal reform to better support Black, Indigenous, and racialized employees.

Nicholas Marcus Thompson at a press conference.

International Recognition and Impact

Nicholas has been a prominent voice on national and international platforms, including at the Senate of Canada and the United Nations. His advocacy at the United Nations and continuous engagement with global human rights organizations underscore the global relevance of his work and the necessity for sustained efforts to combat systemic discrimination.

In April 2024, Nicholas led the launch of a Global Strategic Litigation and Advocacy Network at the United Nations, aimed at uniting efforts worldwide to address systemic racism and discrimination through strategic litigation and advocacy.

Additionally, Nicholas played a pivotal role in leading a special review by the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI) of Canada’s human rights practices. This review highlighted significant issues within the Canadian Human Rights Commission, further cementing his influence in driving international human rights standards.

Personal Life and Community Involvement

Nicholas Marcus Thompson sitting

Amid his professional accomplishments, Nicholas's family life remains a cornerstone of his identity. As a father of three, his commitment to family values deeply influences his endeavors. He actively supports his alma mater, Morvant Laventille Secondary School, focusing on at-risk youth, and is a proud supporter of the Morvant Oilbirds Basketball Team.

 

His dedication to uplifting the less fortunate in Trinidad and Tobago through sports and education exemplifies his commitment to positive change and empowerment.

Nicholas Marcus Thompson's unwavering commitment to social justice and equality continues to inspire and lead the charge for a more inclusive and equitable society. His journey from Trinidad and Tobago to becoming a global advocate for human rights exemplifies the impact one individual can have in the relentless pursuit of justice.

Nicholas Marcus Thompson with children.
Nicholas Marcus Thompson with children
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