Please contact any of these spokespeople for comment.
Winnipeg – Head Office
Nicole Merrick, B.A., LL.B, is a long standing advocate on the issue of children’s rights. Nicole is a lawyer and partner at one of Winnipeg’s leading law firms, Taylor McCaffrey LLP.
Nicole has volunteered in the past with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Regional Office for South-East Asia in Bangkok, Thailand, where she worked on human-trafficking and other human rights abuse issues. In addition to being on the board of directors of Beyond Borders and a member of the Beyond Borders legal team, Nicole is also board member and past-chairperson for The Laurel Centre, Inc., an organization that provides counseling services to women and men who have experienced child sexual victimization.
Speaking Topics: Child Sex Trafficking
David Matas is a Winnipeg based immigration and refugee lawyer. He chaired the international meetings of ECPAT in Bangkok in 2002, and in Rio de Janiero in 2005 and 2008. He provides legal counsel for Beyond Borders. He was awarded the Order of Canada in December 2008.
Speaking Topics: Child Sexual Abuse Images (child pornography)
Mark Erik Hecht is a lawyer, academic and human rights advocate as well as the co-founder of Beyond Borders. He is currently legal advisor to the Children’s Aid Society and the senior legal counsel to Beyond Borders/ECPAT Canada. Prior to his recent appointments, he was a visiting professor at the University of Ottawa and an assistant professor and the access to justice chair at the University of Windsor. Mr. Hecht’s primary research interest is international child law, specifically the role and involvement of the private sector in the commercial sexual exploitation of children.
Mr. Hecht has sat on the board of trustees for ECPAT International, the Canadian government’s Committee against the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and Youth, and the patron board of the Alliance for the Rights of Children. He is the secretary for CINCYR: The Canadian Information Network on Child and Youth Rights.
From 2000-2004, Mr. Hecht was the executive director of Human Rights International, a non-government organization that specializes in human rights networking, research and documentation in the Americas, Asia and Europe. In that capacity, he was a member of the Canadian delegation to the three UN World Congresses against the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and key-note speaker at the UNESCO Meeting of Experts in Paris on the subject of child protection on the Internet. He recently acted as moderator at the Human Rights and the Internet colloquium in Canada and the First Conference of the Americas on Child Pornography on the Internet in Brazil.
Mr. Hecht continues to teach human rights law, family law and Internet law at the University of Ottawa and the Université de Sherbrooke. He also teaches international child law at the University of New South Wales in Sydney and Australian National University in Canberra where he is completing his Ph.D. in law.
Speaking topics: Corporate Social Responsibility, International Child Law
Jonathan Rosenthal is a Toronto based criminal defence lawyer and professor adjunct at Osgoode Hall Law School.
He is a frequent media commentator and has made it his passion to advocate as best he can on behalf of society’s most vulnerable members; children.
Speaking Topics: Child Sex Tourism, Internet Luring, Sexual Abuse Imagery (child pornography), Sexual Abuse in Polygamy, Commercial Child Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking (pertaining to specific case law and legislation).