Staff & Students

Yukon Human Rights Commission Staff are responsible for the day to day operations of the Commission.

Director of Human Rights

The Director of Human Rights is responsible to the Commission for the administration of the Yukon Human Rights Act, and for ensuring that complaints are dealt with in accordance with the Act.

Karen Moir – Director

Karen has over fifteen years of professional, academic, and volunteer experience advancing human rights. Originally from Ottawa, she has lived in the Yukon and worked for the Government of Canada since 2015. Her most recent role with Crown Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada was Manager of Laws and Human Rights for the department’s national secretariat to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Karen previously managed the First Nations Child and Family Services, Family Violence Prevention and Education programs, where she led regional reforms in response to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal’s historic ruling on discrimination against Indigenous children and families. Karen began her career with the Canadian International Development Agency and partners in Washington, DC before joining the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organisation in Turin, Italy. She was later a consultant for the United Nations Development Programme in New York, USA and a fellow at the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development in Geneva, Switzerland. Karen has an Honours Bachelor of Social Sciences in International Development and Globalization from the University of Ottawa and a Master of Laws in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex, UK. Karen served as a past Chair and co-Chair during two terms on the Yukon Human Rights Commission between 2016 and 2022. She is currently a Director of the Board for Inter Pares, a Canadian organization working internationally to build peace, advance justice and globalize equality.

Legal Counsel

The Legal Counsel analyzes inquiries and complaints, provides legal advice and ongoing training to Commission Members and staff, and represents the Commission before the Yukon Human Rights Board of Adjudication when required. They also facilitate settlement discussions between Complainants and Respondents, and work on special projects including public education and research.

Vida Nelson – Legal Counsel

Vida Nelson became legal counsel to the Commission in May 2018. She worked for a local law firm specializing in personal injury, family law and civil litigation. She was born and raised in the Yukon, and holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Manitoba, as well as a Bachelor of Science from Simon Fraser University. She is passionate about promoting diversity, access to justice and new conflict resolution mechanisms.

Operations Officer

The Operations Officer is responsible for supporting the Director and Legal Counsel with active human rights complaints and is often the first point of contact for members of the public who reach out to the Commission. In addition to providing administrative support to staff, they also work on special projects, such as A Yukon Without Sexual Harassment, and assist in the development of educational materials.

Human Rights Officers

Human Rights Officers are responsible for the investigation of complaints accepted by the Yukon Human Rights Commission. They may also provide legal information to members of the public, and present at workshops or training events.

Rights Promotion Coordinator

Rights Promotion Coordinator (RPC) is responsible for the development and delivery of the Commission’s rights promotion and research projects, as well as educational programming including public, legal, professional, youth, and stakeholder education and skills development. The RPC is responsible for working with other community partners to meet the goals and mandate of the Commission as set out in the Yukon Human Rights Act, with the specific duties of providing education, training, and ongoing resources for complainants, respondents, professionals working in the area of human rights law, and members of the public seeking information from the Commission.

Rights Promotion Assistant

The Rights Promotion Assistant is responsible for assisting the Rights Promotion Coordinator in the development and delivery of the Commission’s rights promotion and research projects as well as educational programming. They work to advance the public education and research role of the Yukon Human Rights Commission.

Interns and Partnerships

Human Rights Interns

The Commission regularly hosts paid Human Rights Intern positions for students and recent graduates. Generally, Human Rights Interns are law students or recent law school graduates, but the Commission has also partnered with other organizations such as universities and non-governmental organizations to host positions for students and graduates in other disciplines. For example, in 2015-2016, the Commission partnered with Journalists for Human Rights to provide two intern positions for emerging Indigenous journalists.

Human Rights Intern positions are periodically posted on our website. Please contact if you have questions about student positions.

Pro Bono Students Canada

Pro Bono Students Canada (PBSC) was the first pro bono organization in the country and a nationally respected program that is actively supported by the bar, judiciary, and academy. PBSC was founded at the University of Toronto in 1996 and today operates in 22 law schools in Canada. Each year, PBSC harnesses the talent and drive of over 1500 law students across the country to provide legal services free of charge to low-income citizens and not-for-profit organizations.

Thank you to our amazing 2019-20 student teams from the University of Ottawa, the University of Victoria, the University of British Columbia, and McGill University. Please contact the Pro Bono Students Canada chapter at any law school in Canada if you have questions about how to apply to this program.

McGill International Human Rights Internships

The Commission regularly hosts one or two students from the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism (CHRLP) each summer.

The International Human Rights Internships Program (IHRIP) is a fully credited course that allows students to earn six (6) credits toward the completion of the BCL/LLB degree. The Program interviews and selects law students for placements as interns with NGOS, courts, and public institutions for a period of 12 weeks over the summer. Partner organizations provide students with practical work experience in human rights investigation, monitoring, and reporting. The internships also provide exposure to the operation and implementation of human rights instruments and norms.

Please contact the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism if you have questions about how to apply to this program.