Human Rights Institute to Address Gender Justice in the Americas at Major Conference

Human Rights Institute to Address Gender Justice in the Americas at Major Conference


Media Contact:     Public Affairs Office, 212-854-2650 [email protected]

New York, Feb. 17, 2011The Human Rights Institute (HRI) of Columbia Law School will co-host a groundbreaking conference on gender, sexuality and women’s rights issues that will bring together leading scholars and advocates from over 20 countries in North, South, Central America and the Caribbean. 

The conference,  “Gender Justice in the Americas: A Transnational Dialogue on Sexuality, Violence, Reproduction & Human Rights,” will be held Feb. 23 - 25, 2011 at the University of  Miami School of Law, and is intended to promote a transnational exchange between advocates and academics working on sexual, reproductive and women’s rights issues in the Americas.  Other organizers include the University of Miami School of Law’s Human Rights Clinic, the Human Rights Center of the University of Diego Portales (Chile), and the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Participants will examine recent law and policy developments at the local, national, regional, and international levels in the areas of human rights, women's rights, gender, sexuality and economic justice, as well as the legal and advocacy strategies employed by the women's and human rights movements in the region, to deepen their effect.

Professor Suzanne Goldberg, director of the Law School’s Center for Gender and Sexuality Law, will participate on a panel entitled "Sexual Rights–Beyond Recognition,” while Paola Garcia Rey, counsel for HRI’s Inter American Human Rights Project, will address issues of transnational advocacy, gender and international human rights systems. Also participating in the conference is co-organizer Caroline Bettinger-López, formerly with Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute and Clinic, and currently associate professor of clinical legal education and director of the Human Rights Clinic at University of Miami School of Law.  

“The Human Rights Institute is thrilled to promote this exchange of ideas and strategies for implementing international human rights norms among scholars and advocates who work on gender, sexuality and women’s rights issues across the Americas,” said Risa Kaufman, executive director of Columbia Law School’s HRI. “This important gathering will allow us to deepen and expand networks of practitioners and academics working to advance the goal of gender justice.”

Other participants include such renowned international figures as Elizabeth Abi-Mershed, the adjunct executive secretary of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; Susana Chiarotti, member of the advisory board for the Latin American and Caribbean Committee for the Defense of Women's Rights (CLADEM); Rebecca Cook, professor of law at the University of Toronto; and Nancy Northup’ 88, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

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