Janet Conners

January 4, 1956 - August 20, 2022

Janet was born on January 4, 1956 in Vancouver and spent several years in Yellowknife before moving to Halifax in 1981 with a young son. During the ensuing years she pursued a career as a laboratory technologist at the VG Hospital. She met RandyConners in 1985 and he tested positive for HIV shortly after. They married in 1987.

1993 brought many challenges and changes to their lives, and they were featured in a documentary which was broadcast on November 30, 1993. The following day, World AIDS Day, they held a press conference to push for recognition of the right for compensation and a review of the blood supply system. Their challenge was quickly dealt with by the then provincial Minister of Health, George Moody. Randy and Janet went on to develop a warm and personal relationship with him. The province developed a compensation package by April, 1994. Janet and Randy were moving forces behind the Commission of Inquiry on the Blood System in Canada (known as the Krever Inquiry) and Janet made appearances at it.

Her impact statement for the Krever Inquiry is here.

Throughout the personal pain and tragedy of those years, Janet found time to be the first female vice chair of the NS PWA Coalition and president of the NS Haemophiliac Society, and participated in fifty safe sex forums held throughout the Nova Scotia school system along with many panel discussions.1

In 2016, Janet told her story to the AIDS Activist History Project. The interview in video and text is here.


These were mostly collected from Facebook following Janet's death

DrBobFredrickson writes: She was such a strength for all of us for so long: her strength of conviction that this disease was indeed everybody’s hell; there was no “we or they;” her profound eloquence even in her grief of losing her husband and in her own diagnosis; she spoke both truth to power and power to truth. Halifax was and is a better place from her having gifted us with her love. Her obvious happiness from moving to Cape Breton to be with her son and grandchildren in the last year; though we knew we’d miss her, no one ever deserved such happiness more. Rest in the power of equality, my friend


1. Adapted from the 1995 StonewallTavern Awards program