Tara Lyons

BA (SFU), MA (Concordia), PhD (Carleton)
Tara Lyons
Surrey Office: Surrey Main 3881-16
Surrey Campus: 604.599.3433

Tara Lyons, PhD (she/her), is a faculty member in the Department of Criminology and Chair of the KPU Research Ethics Board. Dr. Lyons’ research examines how legal and health systems and policies impact the health of criminalized communities. Specifically, her work examines how intersecting social and structural factors shape the health and wellbeing of LGBTQ2+ people, sex workers, and people who use drugs. Her community-based research with trans and queer individuals engaged in sex work and/or substance use has contributed to some of the only Canadian evidence in this area of study. Dr. Lyons has extensive experience conducting community-based research and has a strong record of effective and meaningful knowledge translation.

Dr. Lyons has worked extensively within social justice activism, including prison justice and drug policy reform. She co-founded Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP) and currently serves as a CSSDP Strategic Advisor. She is committed to integrating diversity, equity and inclusion into her classes and at KPU more broadly. Dr. Lyons is a member of KPU's Pride Advocacy Group, a group working towards safer and more inclusive classrooms and spaces for LGBTQ2+ students, staff, and faculty at KPU.


Courses taught

  • ARTS 1100 Exploring the Arts – Cannabis
  • CRIM 1100 Introduction to Criminology
  • CRIM 1101 Introduction to the Criminal Justice System
  • CRIM 3104 Qualitative Research Methods
  • CRIM 3217 Women, Crime, and Justice
  • CRIM 3270 Substance Use and Harm Reduction
  • CRIM 4900 Special Topics: Drugs, Crime, and Policy
  • CRIM 5000 Honours Thesis I
  • CRIM 5020 Honours Thesis II

Scholarly Work