Dr. Diana Lewis
Diana is a Mi’kmaq woman from Sipekne’katik First Nation in Nova Scotia, Canada. Over her career, Diana has worked for First Nations, Indigenous political organizations, and federal and provincial governments. Diana’s doctoral research focused on using quantitative, qualitative, and Indigenous methodologies to assess how the health of a First Nation community has been impacted by exposure to pulp mill effluent for over fifty years. She continues to work with the community as a follow up to her initial research. Diana’s long-term interests are to foster a wider understanding of the unique aspects of Indigenous health, specifically as it is impacted by resource or industrial development. She is Principal Investigator and Co-Director of A Shared Future: Achieving Strength, Health, and Autonomy through Renewable Energy Development for the Future, a large international research program which explores how Indigenous knowledge systems, as applied to renewable energy development, may have the potential to lead us towards ‘healthful environments’ through reconciling and healing our relations with each other as well as the land, air, and water around us. Diana is in the initial stages of developing a research agenda with a national Indigenous organization that will see her approach to environmental health research employed more widely with First Nations in Canada. Diana is a faculty member at
Western University in London, Ontario, in the Department of Geography and the Indigenous Studies Program, where she offers courses in Indigenous history, contemporary Indigenous issues, and Indigenous research methods.
WORKSHOP TITLE : Ohneganos: Decolonizing Environmental Health Research
DESCRIPTION : Since 1967, Pictou Landing First Nation (PLFN) has been told that the health of their community has not been impacted by a pulp and paper mill dumping 85 million litres of effluent per day into a lagoon bordering their community. Based on lived experience, the community knew otherwise. I have been working with the PLFN women to assess health in the community using a culturally appropriate environmental health framework to determine that their health has in fact been impacted. In this workshop, we will explore how Indigenous health disparities may be compounded by climate change.