Posts Tagged ‘mobilisation’

Timmins High School, Canada, shows the way in local action

March 25, 2015

For those who don’t realise how much is going on at the local level in support of human right, here is a little story from Canada. Alan S. Hale in The Daily Press of 24 March describes an evening at Timmins High School:”Local defenders of human rights to be honoured“.

Tom Baby and Toree Doupont hold up with winning posters from the anti-racism poster contest held in local schools during the campaign leading up to the Evening of Applause scheduled at Timmins High Wednesday night.

Tom Baby and Toree Doupont hold up with winning posters from the anti-racism poster contest held in local schools during the campaign leading up to the Evening of Applause scheduled at Timmins High Wednesday night

The inaugural Evening of Applause is being organized by a recently-formed committee made up of the local school boards and post-secondary institutions, as well as the Timmins Friendship Centre and the Timmins Local Immigration Partnership. The committee’s goal was to reproduce the successful campaign which has been taking place every year in North Bay for the past 25 years.

We decided that we wanted to start that project up here in Timmins. So in September, we brought together representatives from all the different education institutions and formed a committee. So this committee has been putting together all the different events to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (which was on March 21,)” recalled Tom Baby, the Timmins Local Immigration Partnership coordinator.

For the past three months, the committee has been doing a variety of awareness raising activities in local schools, including in-class instruction and an anti-racism poster contest. The contest drew many submissions, but in the end, the winners were Lindsay Johnston in Grade 3, Emily Morreau in Grade 6 and Cassandra Lapointe in Grade 7. All three students received a $50 prize for their posters. [Anita Spadafore of Amnesty International; Dan McKay who is a local advocate for people with seeing disabilities and founding member of the Barrier Elimination Action Committee, and Ed Ligocki who is the executive director of the Good Samaritan Inn homeless shelter.]

During the Evening of Applause, the first three honourees will be inducted onto the Human Rights Wall of Fame, which will be a new permanent fixture at the Timmins Public Library.

Local defenders of human rights to be honoured | Timmins Press.

Mexico Activists Convene First People’s Constitutional Assembly

February 11, 2015

Catholic priest, human rights defender and key organizer, Raul Vera, addressing the assembly.

Catholic priest, human rights defender and key organizer, Raul Vera, addressing the assembly. | Photo: Victor Figueroa / teleSUR

Marking the anniversary of the signing of Mexico’s 1917 constitution, activists, intellectuals and citizens participated in the first national ‘Citizen’s and Popular Constituent Assembly’ to propose a ‘bottom-up’ revision of Mexico’s Magna Carta. So reports teleSur on 5 February.  The assembly, held in Mexico City and attended by nearly 1000 people, proposes to develop a new constitution that prioritizes social, political and economic rights.

One of the assembly’s key organizers, catholic bishop and social activist, Raul Vera, said that the current state and crisis of violence as well as political and economic corruption in Mexico is a primary driving force behind the initiative.“Justice and rights have disappeared for the mass majority of the Mexican multitude of poor and the small number of middle class that remains…thus, the idea of forming a new constitution in Mexico comes from the idea, finality, objective that we Mexican citizens can be become subjects of the country’s historical construction,”said the human rights defender in his address to the crowd.

Participating in the assembly were families of the disappeared 43 Ayotzinapa students, their fellow classmates, as well as human rights defenders, writers, artists, priests, students and labor leaders.

The Catholic priest and respected migrant rights defender, Alejandro Solalinde, exclaimed that the assembly and its objectives rule out the participation of political parties in the process, declaring that legislators “do not represent anybody.” Solalinde went on to send a message to Mexico’s president, Enrique Pena Nieto, that the work of the assembly will move forward to push for peaceful systemic political and social change. “It depends on you [Pena Nieto] that the changes will be pacific, we are going to carry them out no matter what, but if you repress or use force and violence, you will be the only one responsible … you will be guilty,” Solalinde stated.

Although it remains unclear as to how the assembly’s findings and declarations will be implemented legally, organizers say that the grassroots work and proposals of viable alternatives will carry on beyond 2017, marking 100 years of the original constitutional assembly of the Mexican Revolution.

Mexico Activists Convene First People’s Constitutional Assembly | News | teleSUR.

Funding for human rights film festivals in developing countries

April 7, 2014

Those who are planning to organise a film project with human rights films in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Middle East could apply for (modest) funding from the Netherlands-based NGO “Movies that Matter”. The organisation also offers advice to initiate human rights film festivals and helps to circulate and exhibit human rights films. Its support covers projects like mobile cinema projects, human rights film festivals, travelling film festivals, outreach programmes, and educational activities at schools and universities, but it does not support film production! The deadline for applications is 15 April 2014.

For more information, selection criteria and application forms, see www.moviesthatmatter.nl/international