Rehabilitation International (RI) September Newsletter

October 26, 2010

 

MONDAY MAIL

September 2010

 FOR RI EC, RIF AND RI MEMBERS

Index:

  • Registration Information for the RI European Regional Conference, EC, RIF, Commissions, and Governing Assembly Meetings, Denmark, November 2010
  • Report on the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Summit
  • CRPD Ratification Updates
  • Membership News
  • Upcoming Meetings and Events
  • Other News
  • Resource/Opportunities

 

The RI European Regional Conference, Copenhagen, Denmark, November 2010

RI-Europe and the Global RI call on all RI members to join this very important event in Denmark.

The 2nd Announcement for the European Rehabilitation Conference 2010 is available at: http://www.riglobal.org/ and http://www.rehabiliteringsforum.dk/., with information on the program, venue and registration. 

 

Dates for the various meetings in Copenhagen are as follows:

RI EC meeting                               Saturday Nov. 6   All day

RI EC & RI EC/RIF         Sunday Nov. 7      Morning EC & Afternoon EC/RIF

RI Governing Assembly      Monday Nov. 8   All day

RI Commissions                 Tuesday Nov. 9    Morning 9-11:30

Regional Conference          Tuesday Nov. 9    1:00 pm Conference Opening

                                                                  & Plenary Sessions until 6:00 pm

Regional Conference          Wednesday Nov.10 All day Conf., Plenary, Workshops, Parallel Sessions

 

Venus Ilagan, RI Secretary General and Megan Brinster, RI Development and Program Officer attended the National Conference on Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Focus on Legal Capacity and Access to Justice in October 13 & 14 in Argentina. Updates for these events will be given in the next Monday Mail. 

 

Report on the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Summit:

September 20, 2010

During the week of September 20, 2010, members of RI attended the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Summit at the United Nations. They were able to do so as representatives of an NGO with consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council. The Summit was opened on September 20 by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who reminded the General Assembly that they were there “because the fight for a more prosperous, stable and equitable world is itself at the heart of the mission of the United Nations.” These remarks spoke of the promise made ten years ago by the international community to fulfill the 8 MDGs of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, promotion gender equality and empowering women, reducing child mortality, combating HIV/AIDS, promoting environmental stability, and developing a global partnership for development. 

            In an effort to maintain the progress that has been made and to overcome challenges and gaps where inequity still remains, the Secretary General referred to the reports, statistics, analysis, and recommendations that were put forward in anticipation of the Summit, stressing that they provide the international community with the tools to achieve the MDGs. (For a list of documents and reports please visit the UN site http://www.un.org/en/mdg/summit2010/documents.shtml). The Secretary General called on the international community to live up to the commitment made 10 years ago. He pointed out that it is a matter of will and determination, of putting forth the resources, time, and commitment necessary to ensure that countries are making the “smart investments in infrastructure, small farmers, social services, and, above all, in women and girls.” That they are “supporting the vulnerable despite the economic crisis”, practicing “truly fair trade and action on climate change” as well as “addressing inequality, both among and within countries.” The Secretary General warned against allowing the current economic crisis to cause the international community to fall back on the flawed practices that lead to this global crisis in the first place.

            The Secretary General ended his opening address with a statement intended to motive and mobilize the international community. “Let us make this investment in a better future for all.  There is no global project more worthwhile.  Let us send a strong message of hope, of fundamental hope.  Let us keep the promise,” he said. RI hopes that, as the international community renews its commitment to reaching the MDGs, persons with disabilities will not only be included among those who the Goals seek to assist, but that they will also be included among those involved in the planning and achievement of these Goals. We ask that as the global community moves forward, it does so on the basis of inclusivity and equality for all. 

Joseph Deiss (Switzerland), President of the General Assembly, spoke on the creation of the MDGs and the great hope it brought to the international community. Stressing that “[w]e (the international community) have no right to fail,” Mr. Deiss emphasized that real commitment is indispensable from all participants—individuals, Heads of State and Government, as well as members of the United Nations—to achieve the MDGs by the 2015 deadline. Echoing The Secretary General, Mr. Deiss emphasized that countries know what needs to be done, and that despite the economic crisis they see what is successful. It is now a matter of will.

Ali Abdussalam Treki (Libya), former Assembly President and co-chair of the high-level event, stated that “[i]t would take good policies, tireless implementation and financial resources to bring about the changes mandated in the Millennium Declaration; hundreds of billions of dollars were still needed.” He went on to mention that the quality, effectiveness, and disbursement of aid were “far from optimal.”

Following the opening by the MDG officials, several heads of UN departments and related international institutions spoke on the state of international affairs, especially in light of the recent economic crisis. (For a full transcript please visit http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2010/ga10987.doc.htm). Some key comments were made by the following:

  Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, said: “The future hinges on restoring sustainable global growth to pre-crisis levels.  Advanced economies should keep their Gleneagles pledges on aid and open trade markets, while developing nations should mobilize domestic tax revenue, which could be used to create social safety nets.” 

Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the World Trade Organization, stressed that ensuring quota-free access to markets is as essential as the successful close of the Doha Development Round of trade negotiations. 

Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), spoke on the development perspective as Chair of the United Nations Development Group. She reported that “progress requires more inclusive economic growth models, scaled-up social protections, and more access to affordable energy.  Leaders can make changes needed to put their countries on the fast track to achieve the Goals.  Going forward, the pledge made a decade ago, can be turned into reality.”

Following these opening remarks, a debate among countries was held. A wide range of countries reported on the gains they had made while also addressing the assistance they required and the issues that needed to be addressed as a result of the financial crisis. (For a full report on each country’s speech and on their current standing in regards to the MDGs, please visit: http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2010/ga10987.doc.htm)

 

September 21, 2010

            The session opened with presidents, ministers, and other officials requesting that concrete plans should be created on the issues of: technical and financial assistance, conditions attached to aid, fairness in the global economic system, security, ownership of the Goals by developing countries, the maximization of both aid and domestic resources, and improved governance. These plans were directed to be aimed at countries that have fallen behind on the fight to achieve the MDGs and, therefore, require greater assistance in moving forward. 

            Throughout the day’s session, countries spoke on their current status and development. They often called for a more equal distribution of wealth and resources as well as the need for inclusive economic growth. Countries such as Liberia called for a true global partnership that addressed removing barriers to trade as well as the lack of infrastructure, capital and human resources that prevented many countries from progressing on the MDGs. 

            Speakers during the session reminded donor countries of the commitment they had made 10 years ago. In return, donor countries, such as Germany, emphasized that they would contribute where they could, whether it be resources or funds. Yet they also said that ultimately the international community and international bodies such as the UN must work together to reach the MDGs as donor aid cannot last forever. German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed that countries themselves must promote and foster a global market, and that the role of Germany and other donor countries was that of support for these countries own efforts as part of a broad based partnership.   

            Countries such as Iran and Zimbabwe spoke of political constraints that interfere with development assistance and of the issues surrounding capitalism and multinational corporations.  Somalia and Finland pointed to conflict, referencing to the pirates that have terrorized the coast of Somalia, as a major obstacle to the MDGs. (For full transcripts please visit http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2010/ga10989.doc.htm).

 

September 22, 2010

            The UN Secretary General began the third meeting by stressing the importance of reversing and preventing biodiversity loss before it is too late. The Secretary General noted that the planet’s habitat and species are central to the MDGs, and also that they have the capacity to generate trillions of dollars. He equated standing by and allowing for the destruction of the environment and biodiversity to throwing money away. He said: “We must stop thinking of environmental protection as a cost.  It is an investment that goes hand in hand with the other investments that you, as Heads of State and Government, must make to consolidate economic growth and human well-being in your countries.” With the 2010 deadline for substantially reducing the loss of biodiversity coming to pass, this year without fulfillment, the Secretary General urged leaders to commit to the strategic plan on biodiversity and to the 2050 biodiversity vision, which is expected to be adopted at the Tenth Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, to be held in Nagoya, Japan, next month.

            General Assembly President Joseph Deiss (Switzerland) shared his hope that the discussion at the Summit would assist with the negotiations set to take place in Japan. Mr. Deiss stressed that preserving biodiversity was interconnected to the fight against poverty as well as to efforts to improve health and security. Mr. Deiss emphasized the devastating effects that environmental degradation was having on developing countries. He stated that “[i]t is the poor of the world who will suffer the most if we do not stop the loss of our biological resources, since the poor depend disproportionately on biodiversity for their day-to-day livelihoods.”  Mr. Deiss noted that it was necessary to create partnerships with and strengthen international commitments to developing countries, who are the principal owners of biodiversity resources. In that way, they too can reap the benefits of the use of these natural riches. In addition, Mr. Deiss called for an end to the misappropriation of genetic resources and “biopiracy.”

            States spoke of the need for conservation and sustainable use of biological resources as crucial for sustainable development and poverty eradication. José Manuel Durão Barroso, President of the European Commission, spoke on behalf of the European Union and noted the commitment of Europe, both in terms of money and conservation, to the issue of environmental preservation. He also called for “reforming, eliminating and reorienting subsidies harmful to biodiversity as well as [providing] funding for ecosystem services and other market-based instruments.”

            At the end of the 3rd session, the General Assembly adopted the outcome document, “Keeping the Promise: United to Achieve the Millennium Development Goals” (document A/65/L.1), which sets out an action plan to achieve the MDGs by 2015. Concern was expressed over Goal 8, noting that there has been ineffective implementation of strategies for creating a global partnership for development. The Secretary General concluded: “We are convinced that the [Goals] can be achieved, including in the poorest countries, with renewed commitment, effective implementation and intensified collective action by all Member States and other relevant stakeholders.” (For a full version of the outcome document please visit http://www.un.org/en/mdg/summit2010/pdf/mdg%20outcome%20document.pdf)

 

            As the international community moves forward with achieving the MDGs, RI calls on governments, international institutions, the UN, NGOs and others involved in carrying out the MDGs to include persons with disabilities in all planning, implementation, and assistive polices. Without the inclusion of persons with disabilities, further development of the MDGs cannot be achieved. As persons with disabilities remain among the poorest around the globe, efforts must be undertaken to ensure that they too are provided with equal opportunity, accessibility, rights, and inclusion. Without the direct participation and inclusion of persons with disabilities, the MDGs cannot be truly realized. For additional information on RI’s work to promote the MDGs and towards the inclusion of persons with disabilities, please visit the RI website http://www.riglobal.org/ or contact the RI Secretariat via email (ri@riglobal.org) or by calling the office (212-420-1500). 

 

 CRPD Ratification Update:

  • Greece signed the Optional Protocol on September 27, 2010.
  • Nigeria ratified the Convention on September 24, 2010.
  • Nigeria also ratified the Optional Protocol on the same day.
  • Armenia ratified the Convention on September 22, 2010

 To date, there are:    

    95 ratifications of the Convention

    147 signatories to the Convention

    58 ratifications of the Optional Protocol

    90 signatories to the Optional Protocol

Membership News:

  • We at RI would like to remind our members that a rich array of documents, including newsletters, organizations’ annual reports, and press releases are available on our website under the membership section (http://www.riglobal.org/about/members/member-documents/). We are continuously striving to provide you with the best possible service, and we strongly encourage you to make use of this valuable resource. One of the latest postings is the PSRD News, the second volume of the Pakistani Society for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled’s summer newsletter.
  • RI has given The WiderNet Project, a non-profit service program in the School of Library and Information Science at the University of Iowa that promotes low-cost information and communication for underserved populations, permission to distribute the contents of our website, http://riglobal.org/, to people lacking Internet access via the Global Disabilities Rights Library (GDRL). The WiderNet Project's GDRL brings a wealth of information to organizations that serve people with disabilities in developing countries but lack adequate Internet access. The GDRL builds a bridge between global information sources and disability rights advocates, policymakers, and disabled people's organizations. Millions of people around the world will find it easier to access hundreds of thousands of educational and organizational resources on disability rights, whether or not they have access to the Internet. The library's collection includes resources such as information on independent living, advocacy, education, transportation, public policy, employment, vocational rehabilitation, and other topics. The project is supported by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and is being developed in collaboration with the United States International Council on Disability (USICD), the RI USA member organization. RI is glad to join The WiderNet Project’s efforts to provide underprivileged people around the world with access to educational information and resources. More information about the project and participating institutions can be found in the following websites: http://www.gdrl.org/; http://www.usicd.org/template/page.cfm?id=163; http://www.widernet.org/; and
    http://www.widernet.org/egranary.
  • On September 19, 2010, a ceremony was held to mark the one year anniversary of the death of Dr. Thakur V. Prasad, a tireless advocate for the rights of the disabled and the underprivileged in India. The ceremony was designed to honor his memory and also to celebrate his outstanding life work. He will be sorely missed by his family, friends, colleagues, and the countless others who were touched by his great kindness and sense of justice.
  • JASMAR, a Senegalese human security organization, has released its annual report. The report covers all projects in human security currently in progress as well as the organization’s latest developments and achievements. JASMAR was established in 2001 in response to the Explosive Remnant of War (ERW) issue facing the Senegalese population. Today, the organization’s domain has expanded from combating ERWs to include Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA), integrating ex-combatants into society, controlling the spread of HIV/AIDS, and advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities (PWDs). According to the report, this last year showed great progress in the consolidation of peace in Sudan through the continued reintegration of ex-combatants. It also shows that JASMARs achievements in the implementation of mine action continued to excel, especially in the regions of Kassala, Blue Nile, and South and West Darfur. Further, JASMAR continued to work diligently to uphold Senegal’s commitment in keeping tract with the CRPD obligations as well as the Convention of Cluster Munitions. To learn more about JASMAR, please visit http://www.jasmar.net/ and to view the full report, go to http://www.jasmar.net/Documents/2010_annual_report_english.pdf.
  • RI member, Tamir Welfare Organization is a Pakistani NGO that has as its mission the establishment of an inclusive, rights based society in Pakistan through the empowerment of that country’s disadvantaged communities—has recently release a report that gives details of the struggles and successes in their effort to aid those affected by the devastating floods that have recently ravaged the region. Tamir, along with the UK based Cheshire Disability, is running an Inclusive Education Program in the highly flooded district of Punjab, Pakistan. In the month of August alone, they have been able to organize 10 medical relief camps, also in Punjab. Their volunteers have helped in excess of 2000 people through these camps and also through food supplies. They are also planning to start a Community Based Rehabilitation Project for vulnerable groups such as disabled people, women, and children who suffered badly in the recent flood. Obviously, despite theirs and others’ efforts, the disaster is vast and the need for more collaborative effort is urgent. Therefore, Tamir is in search of potential new partners and resources. They have posted a flood relief appeal on their website as well as on a Facebook page. To join the fight or to gather more information about Tamir, please visit http://tamir.org.pk/index.htm. You may also follow them on Facebook by going to http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=5506559&fbid=114925980133&id=775885133&ref=nf#%21/profile.php?id=100000697312164
  • In an article for the New York Times published on August 28, 2010, Kareem Fahim discusses the recent and surprising loosening of “the Syrian government’s stranglehold on civic life.” To illustrate its point, the article depicts the experiences of one of our members, Chavia Ali, in her attempts to jump start a disabilities rights group, which up until recently had been continuously thwarted by government obstructionism. As of late, however, Ms. Ali has received not only greater freedom to act, but she also has been granted direct financial and moral support from the government. “Ms. Ali was told that a third of her budget would be paid by a group led by Asma al-Assad, the wife of the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad.” Although some activists see this as a great victory to civil society and the general state of liberty of the Syria, others warn that these amount to nothing more than “window-dressing” measures by the government. As it seems, this apparent embrace of civil society unfolds as the government “continues to arrest Islamists, Kurds, and other political opponents, along with the lawyers who represent them.” Yet, Ms. Ali seems undeterred and unapologetic about her recent successes on her daunting quest, “to integrate people with disabilities into society and to help them become independent in a country that makes that nearly impossible.” She says, “[s]ome ideas you can’t touch … I don’t want to go outside of my case. I am working on disabilities.” To read the full article, please go to http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/world/middleeast/29syria.html?_r=1&ref=world.

Upcoming Meetings and Events: .

  • A Day of General Discussion on the Right to Sexual and Reproductive Health will take place November 15, 2010, in Geneva at Palais des Nations during the 45th session of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. The Day of General Discussion is part of the preparatory work leading to the formulation of a general comment on the right to sexual and reproductive health. The day will provide an opportunity to exchange views and garner insights from practitioners and academic experts and hopefully lead to a deeper understanding of the content and implications of these rights. Organizations wishing to submit written contributions on the themes of the Day of General Discussion should do so electronically. Please send them to cescr@ohchr.org indicating "Day of General Discussion" in the subject, as well as in 25 hard copies by 18 October 2010 to: Secretary, Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights UNOG-OHCHR 1211 Geneva, Switzerland. The Committee also invites State parties, United Nations specialized agencies and bodies, United Nations human rights mechanisms, national human rights institutions, non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, and other interested organizations and individuals to participate in the Day of General Discussion. Please fill out the registration form (available soon) and return it to the Secretariat of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights by email: cescr@ohchr.org, no later than October 29, 2010.
  • The 17th International Congress for Design for All will be held February 17 and 18, 2011, in Malaga, Spain. The Congress is being organized by the Department of Accessibility of Malaga Town Hall and the Trade Fairs and Congress Center of Malaga. The international Congress and its exhibition area will be the ideal atmosphere for private and public organizations to meet and exchange experience, make contacts, search for opportunities for collaborating, as well as getting to know the latest innovations within the sector.  This event has become the most important congress in Spain on the subject due to the strong institutional and business commitment as well as the high level of participation. For further information about the Congress, please visit http://www.fycma.com/?idLenguaje=2&event=Diseno%20Universal#/goEvento/Diseno%20Universal//General_Information/Presentation/
  • The World Congress of the World Federation of the Deaf will be held in Durban, South Africa, July 18 - 24, 2011. The WFD World Congress is considered to be the most significant Deaf event in the world. It gathers individuals, researchers, experts, and decision-makers from all around the world to share the latest developments and future challenges confronting Deaf communities. The Congress aims to inspire its attendees to take forward the concept of renaissance, a rebirth of Deaf communities worldwide. The World Congress Second Announcement booklet is available from the organizing committee of WFD Congress, which you can order at registration@wfd2011.com. You may also view the announcement at http://www.wfd2011.com/.

Other News:

 

  • Following the outcome of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Summit (September 20-22, 2010, New York), the United Nations Non-governmental Liaisons Service (UN-NGLS) has released a special NGLS e-Roundup, which analyzes the outcome of the negotiations in light of civil society contributions to the summit process. It also reviews the various plenary sessions, roundtables, side events, partnerships, and other initiatives that took place during the three-day summit. More information about the summit can be viewed online. Further, in order to take stock of the outcome of the “MDG Summit” and to discuss the next steps and challenges ahead for the realization of the MDGs, NGLS will organize a briefing and interactive panel discussion on October 4 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. The panel, including representatives of the UN system and civil society organizations, will examine the extent to which the summit lived up to expectations. It will also identify new openings offered by the summit outcome document and gaps that still need to be addressed. More information about this or other upcoming events is also available online.
  • The International Week of the Deaf was celebrated from 20 to 26 of September 2010 throughout the world by individuals and national associations of the Deaf. This year, WFD has encouraged its national members to focus on Deaf Education, which continues to be one of the most contested issues in the history of Deaf people. To support this cause, the World Federation of the Deaf is calling individuals to sign an online petition, the New Era Document, which rejects the resolutions of the 1880 Milan Congress that banned the use of sign language from educational programmes for deaf children. This is a call upon all nations and people of the world to ensure that educational programmes accept and respect all languages, including sign languages, and all forms of communication. The New Era Document was first presented and signed by hundreds of people in the 21st International Congress on the Education of the Deaf (ICED) in Vancouver, Canada in July 2010. To sign the petition, please visit www.petitions24.com/wfd . The passage in the House of Representatives of Rosa’s Law on September 23, 2010, marks a huge victory for self-advocates and The Arc, an organization that promotes and protects the human rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Rosa’s Law is a piece of legislation that substitutes the term "intellectual disabilities" for the term "mental retardation" in many federal laws. The Senate passed Rosa’s Law earlier this year. Following, the measure will be sent to President Obama who has indicated support for the measure and is expected to sign the bill into law shortly. This is an important stepping stone for shaping future legislation that will transform these outdated terms in entitlement programs.  The Arc and self-advocates were instrumental in the passage of Rosa’s Law by galvanizing support across the nation and through vigorous advocacy.  “Adoption of ‘people first’ language by the federal government encourages the general public to follow suit and is a major step forward in changing attitudes, which will ultimately result in increased opportunities for people with I/DD to be fully included in society,”  said Berns, CEO of the Arc. For more information, please visit http://www.thearc.org/.

Resource Update:

  • The Arc is engaging military families connected to individuals with I/DD to determine their disability needs through a national survey.  The Arc is partnering with the National Military Family Association (NFMA) and other military channels to distribute a special version of The Arc FINDS Family and Individual Needs for Disability Supports Survey to military families that have a family member with a disability. The Arc FINDS is a free, online survey designed to tap into the knowledge and perspectives of families and individuals with disabilities on issues which arise across an individual’s life span.  FINDS has been in the field since late July and already has more than 4,500 respondents, which makes it one of the largest single collections of perspectives from individuals and families connected to intellectual and developmental disabilities in the history of the field.  Results will provide greater understanding about what disability-related services and supports are being received currently, where gaps exist, and what new supports may be needed from the military family perspective. To access the online survey, go to: http://www.thearc.org/ and link to the survey “Military Families: Click Here.”  Please direct questions to Ann Cameron Caldwell, Chief Research and Innovations Officer at Caldwell@thearc.org.
  • International Service Ireland, an international development agency that works to combat poverty and oppression among marginal groups with a particular focus on people with disabilities, currently has three openings available in their Bolivia program on an European Commission (EC) funded initiative working with the Bolivian Institute for the Blind. They are recruiting a Project Coordinator and two Institutional Capacity Builders for a project entitled 'Promotion of the participation of people with visual impairments in social and economic processes'. These positions will be contracted until the end of February 2013 and are based in one of the following locations in Bolivia: La Paz and or Chuquisaca starting as soon as possible. Completed application forms should be sent to okilcullen@is-ireland.ie no later than Friday October 8. Please see our website http://www.is-ireland.ie/ for full job descriptions and the application form. 
  • The African Child Policy Forum (ACPF), an independent, not-for-profit, pan-African institution of policy research and dialogue on the African child, is pleased to announce the 2010 Larissa Award for Outstanding Service to Children, the 3rd such award organized by the institution. The third Larissa Award will go to an initiative that focuses on “Children with Disabilities in Africa.” Attached, please find our Call for Nominations for Outstanding Services in Protecting, Caring, and Providing for Children with Disabilities in Africa. For more information, please visit www.africanchildforum.org/larissa. Visit their website http://www.africanchildforum.org/ or http://www.africanchild.info/ for information on recent publications on a wide range of topics including their ground breaking report, “The African Report on Child Wellbeing 2008: How child-friendly are African governments?”
  • The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has extended to October 15 the deadline for the submissions for the OHCHR study on article 32, international cooperation. All submissions should be sent to:  Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, United Nations Office at Geneva, CH 1211 Geneva 10; Fax. +41 22 917 90 08; E-mail: registry@ohchr.org. The OHCHR study will be discussed in the panel at the Human Rights Council in March 2011. Submissions are welcome from all stakeholders. For further information, use the contact information above and request the attention of Ellen Walker.
  • INTERIGHTS is pleased to announce a call for applications from lawyers, whether in private practice or affiliated to an NGO, who litigate on women’s human rights in Africa and who would like to participate in its forthcoming 2nd Annual Seminar on Litigating Women’s Human Rights in Africa in Mombasa, Kenya, October 20 - 22, 2010. INTERIGHTS defends and promotes human rights and freedoms worldwide through the use of international and comparative law acting as co-representative, a ‘friend of the court’ (amicus curiae), or adviser to counsel. We work with local lawyers, judges, and NGOs to strengthen their capacity to defend human rights effectively at both national and international fora. For further information, please contact Sibongile Ndashe at sndashe@interights.org.
  • VSA, the international organization on arts and disability, invites you to become part of an exciting new project. They are championing the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3, 2010, through a global collaborative video screening designed to generate public awareness of and support for this year’s theme, Keeping the Promise: Mainstreaming Disability in the Millennium Development Goals Towards 2015 and Beyond.  On the evening of December 3 partners across the world will host outdoors screenings of the video installation Motion Disabled, a work by internationally renowned artist Simon Mckeown, which will also include a call to action to support this year’s theme. The screening’s audience members are asked to interact through social media outlets such as Facebook and YouTube to raise awareness and discuss issues centered on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.  Practitioners and educators will be invited to share strategies and to document successful practices through writing, film, and photography that are linked to advancing inclusive education through the arts, and promote other MDGs. They would like you to consider becoming a project partner by coordinating an outdoor screening of Mckeown’s video Motion Disabled on the evening of December 3 and would greatly appreciate if you could post this call for partners on your website and/or send it to your network. To learn more about how you can help or to request a partnership package please contact december3@vsarts.org.  Deadline to submit your partnership application is Wednesday, October 13, 2010.
  • The 27th Pacific Rim International Conference on Disabilities invites you to submit proposals to be discussed during the Conference, April 18 and 19, 2011. In the tradition of Pac Rim, the 2011 conference will visit familiar themes and explore new directions—Exploration and Innovation. With over 16 topic areas, pre and post conference forums, including the International Forum on the Rights of People with Disabilities, they anticipate a rich dialogue and an exchange of best practices, research, methodology, and advocacy initiatives. Proposals are being accepted in all formats. Submit an abstract today at http://www.pacrim.hawaii.edu/callforpapers/ and register by visiting   http://www.pacrim.hawaii.edu/registration/. .
  • Access Exchange International is pleased to announce their newest publication: "Technical and Operational Challenges to Inclusive Bus Rapid Transit: A Guide for Practitioners."  This publication is a compilation of recent international experience aimed especially at practitioners in developing countries but hopefully also of relevance to other colleagues in the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) world.  It addresses specific concerns that have caused many BRT systems to fall short of their potential to serve all categories of passengers.  A Spanish version is in preparation.  Print versions will then be prepared in both English and Spanish.  Requests for a print copy or CD version should be sent to Tom Rickert, 112 San Pablo Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94127, USA (tom@globalride-sf.org). This publication will be available along with other materials in our field at http://go.worldbank.org/MQUMJCL1W1.  
  • The Journal of AIDS and HIV Research (JAHR) is seeking qualified researchers to join its editorial team as editors, associate editors, or reviewers. A multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal published monthly by Academic Journals (www.academicjournals.org/JAHR), JAHR is dedicated to increasing the depth of AIDS and HIV research across disciplines with the ultimate aim of improving HIV/AIDS research. If interested, kindly send your resume to jahr.journal@gmail.com. In addition, the journal welcomes the submission of manuscripts that meet the general criteria of significance and scientific excellence in this subject area, and will publish: original articles in basic and applied research, case studies, critical reviews, surveys, opinions, commentaries, and essays. They invite you to submit your manuscript(s) to jahr.journal@gmail.com. Instruction for authors and other details are available on our website: http://www.academicjournals.org/JAHR/Instruction.htm
  • Human Rights Watch, the international human rights monitoring and advocacy organization, invites recent graduates of law schools or graduate programs in journalism, international relations, area studies, or other relevant disciplines from universities worldwide to apply to its fellowship program with special emphasis on the newly launched Arthur Koenig Fellowship. This fellowship is being established for the first time for the 2011-2012 academic year to help bring talented people from disadvantaged economic backgrounds into the human rights movement. The deadline for applications for the Arthur Koenig Fellowship has been extended to October 18, 2010 (please note that the deadline for all other fellowships remains October 8, 2010). Fellows work full-time for one year with Human Rights Watch in New York, Washington, D.C., or London. Fellows monitor human rights developments in various countries, conduct on-site investigations, draft reports on human rights conditions, and engage in advocacy aimed at publicizing and curtailing human rights violations. Applicants must be available for interviews in New York from late November to mid-December 2010.  Inquiries may be directed to fellowship@hrw.org. Please see http://www.hrw.org/about/fellowships for more information.

 

Anne Hawker, RI President                                    Venus Ilagan, Secretary General