Thursday, November 21, 2019

State Department Meets with Local Organizations in Preparation for the Universal Periodic Review

February 18, 2010 by NARJHR  
Filed under Racial Justice News, Urgent Actions

The Administration’s onsite consultations, conducted as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process, are underway.  With the recent successful UPR consultation in New Orleans, where 14 federal government representatives spent a full day listening to the human rights concerns of people on the Gulf Coast, the USHRN Planning Committee is committed to ensure the remaining eight consultations build on this success and the growing human rights movement across the country.

The consultations are held at locations determined by the Administration, and are coordinated out of the Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor.  Typically, the Administration reaches out to a local host organization, and in some areas also identifies a national organization to assist in the planning.  While the Administration has picked the different locations with particular issues in mind, the host organizations are given primary responsibility for determining the agenda and participants.

Planning and coordination for the upcoming consultations are underway.  As part of our effort to ensure this process is open, transparent, engaging, and inclusive, we are working hard to facilitate coordination of these processes.

Below is the information we currently have, though it is all subject to change, and may not reflect the most recent conversations between members of the Administration and local organizations.  If you are in one of the cities where information is yet to be confirmed, or have different information from that provided below, please inform Sarah <paoletti@law.upenn.edu> or Laura Baum <LBaum@ushrnetwork.org> with the updated information.

Chicago – February 18 & March TBCOn February 18th, the US Dept. of Homeland Security (Civil Rights Civil Liberties) will be joining a standing DHS roundtable discussion.  A wider consultation will be held in March at the John Marshall Law School.                                                      Washington, DC – February 19thThis consultation is being hosted by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights at the request of the State Department.  This is the only consultation deemed “national” in content, where federal government representatives are meeting with an invite-only group of national human rights organizations. New York, NY – February 26thThis consultation is hosted by the Human Rights Institute at Columbia University, with an agenda coordinated by local advocates in NYC and members of the USHRN Planning Committee.  This agenda currently includes panels with time for open comment and dialogue on the following issues: housing, health, right to work and rights in work, criminal justice, and education.  The consultation will also include one, possibly two, site visits. Dearborn, MI – March 3rdThis consultation is themed around discrimination, with most information still to be confirmed.  Host organizations are ADC-Michigan and the NAACP. El Paso, TX – March 8-9Initial planning is underway for this consultation.  The host organizations are Border Network for Human Rights and Human Rights First, and the intended focus for this consultation is immigration and immigrant rights.    Birmingham, AL – March 11-12Planning for this consultation is at the initial stages.  Department of Justice is taking the lead for the administration, and Alabama ARISE is the host organization.  Albuquerque, NM – March 16-17This consultation will focus on indigenous rights and the rights of Indian Nations.  The Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission is serving as the local host organization, and the coordinating committee includes NCAI, AIPC, NNHRC, AILC, and IITC as a consulting organization (with Andrea Carmen, member of the USHRN UPR Planning Committee, taking the lead for the IITC). Chicago, IL – March, Day TBDThis consultation was moved from February so there would be adequate time to plan.  San Francisco/Berkeley, CA – March 25-26.The Administration has identified USF Law School and Boalt Hall School of Law (Berkeley) as the locations.  The host organizations are USF, DREDF, and WILD For Human Rights.  Additional organizations consulting with the host organizations are IITC and Council for Global Equality. Geneva, Switzerland – March 22-26The Administration will also be sending a small delegation comprised of representatives from State and possibly Justice to Geneva for meetings with the Special Rapportuers and country representatives during the week of March 22-26th.  They have dubbed this visit, as with the onsite consultations across the country, as an opportunity to listen and hear what concerns exist as they prepare for the drafting of their UPR report, due in August.

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