Rights

NYC Is Requiring Landlords Set Aside Apartments For Voucher Tenants Under New Approach To Enforcing Human Rights Law

For months, Elizabeth Elohim was living in a shelter with her daughter as she struggled to secure a permanent apartment with a Section 8 housing voucher. Getting the federally funded voucher alone took long enough, in part because she only became eligible once she lived in a shelter. She “hit the ground running” to find an apartment—but quickly realized it was nearly impossible to get a landlord or realtor to accept the voucher, a guaranteed source of payment for rent each month to help low-income families foot the bill.

“As soon as I mentioned that I had a Section 8 voucher, it would become an issue,” Elohim, a mother of a teenager in upper Manhattan who works as an aide to people with developmental disabilities. “I mean, it would be literally so rude to the point where as soon as I mentioned the Section 8 [voucher], sometimes I wouldn’t even

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Kingdom of Morocco Remarkably Elected to UN Human Rights Committee

Elected by 127 votes out of 171, among 14 other competitors vying for the 9 seats to be filled on the said Committee, the Moroccan expert will sit for a four-year term in this UN body in charge of monitoring the implementation of commitments incumbent on states parties under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, ratified to date by 173 countries, said a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad.

The success of this candidacy illustrates the confidence that the far-sighted policy by HM King Mohammed VI enjoys, in terms of democratic reforms, the rule of law, and the protection of human rights as universally recognized, underlined the press release.

This new success reaffirms the trust and credibility enjoyed by national human rights mechanisms and the Moroccan expertise, well known within the UN human rights system, the same source said, adding that it

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Rights and civil society organisations submit recommendations on new acid violence law

Kathmandu, Sept. 16 — A delegation representing six human rights and civil society organisations has submitted a set of recommendations for a new legislation on acid violence to Law and Justice Minister Shivamaya Tumbahangphe.

The delegation of Amnesty International Nepal, Burn Violence Survivors Nepal, Forum for Women, Law and Development, Justice and Rights Institute Nepal, Legal Aid and Consultancy Center Nepal, and Women’s Rehabilitation Center Nepal submitted the recommendations on Wednesday following Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s September 10 directive to the Law Ministry and other concerned officials to draft a new law on acid violence within 15 days.

In subsequent meetings with acid attack survivors, Oli had pledged to pass through an ordinance a new legislation prescribing stricter punishment for acid violence.

Issuing a statement on Wednesday, the delegation of six organisations said that it was important to ensure that the new law adopts a comprehensive approach to dealing

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Apple commits to freedom of information and expression in human rights policy

(Reuters) – Apple Inc said it was committed to freedom of information and expression in a document it has published on its humans rights policy – a move which follows increased pressure from shareholders.

The U.S. tech giant has come under fire for removing virtual network apps from its App store in China and at its February annual general meeting a shareholder proposal called on Apple to publicly commit “to respect freedom of expression as a human right”.

While it was defeated, it gained 40.6% of votes cast – far more than similar motions put forward previously and enough to push the company to respond, experts said.

“We believe in the critical importance of an open society in which information flows freely, and we’re convinced the best way we can continue to promote openness is to remain engaged, even where we may disagree with a country’s laws,” Apple states in

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A hopeful signal for Hong Kong’s human rights and rule of law?



a display in a store


© Hong Kong Free Press


These days, the bad news coming out of Hong Kong seems to arrive on an almost daily basis: Legco elections delayed for a full year. Pan-democratic legislators barred from running for re-election. Apple Daily publisher Jimmy Lai arrested, along with prominent activist Agnes Chow and several others. Pro-democratic legislators charged with rioting in Yuen Long, even though video footage quite clearly shows them coming to the aid of victims of the attack. The list goes on and on.

Recent weeks have brought more worrying news for those concerned about judicial independence and the rule of law in Hong Kong. Sing Tao Daily and Apple Daily reported that Stanley Ho Chun-yiu, a magistrate, had been re-assigned to an administrative posting and would no longer hear cases. (Hong Kong Free Press also reported on the case). Ho’s rulings, in particular his recent acquittal of District Councillor

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UK government plans to remove key human rights protections



Robert Buckland wearing a suit and tie: Photograph: Simon Dawson/Reuters


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Simon Dawson/Reuters

The government is planning to “opt out” of parts of the European convention on human rights in order to speed up deportations of asylum seekers and protect British troops serving overseas from legal action.

The proposals are being coordinated by Downing Street aides. They are intended to rule out claims in areas where judges have supposedly “overreached” their powers.

The restrictions, according to the Sunday Telegraph, could pre­vent mi­grants and asylum seek­ers from us­ing the leg­is­la­tion to avoid being removed from the UK and to shield Bri­tish sol­diers against claims following over­seas op­er­a­tions.

Downing Street’s determination to restrict human rights powers has become entangled with the EU withdrawal negotiations. The government is resisting giving Brussels a formal undertaking to adhere to the convention.

A government spokesperson said: “The UK is committed to the European convention on human rights and to protecting human

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Joint Statement: Draft Law on Public Order Violates Women’s Rights

As representatives of organizations working to promote women’s rights and gender equality in Cambodia, we wish to express our deep concern regarding numerous articles within the Draft Law on Public Order (DLPO), provisions of which violate women’s human rights. We therefore also endorse and echo the call made to the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) in a Joint Civil Society Statement on August 13, 2020, to scrap the draft law.

We acknowledge and commend the RGC for taking positive action to tackle gender inequality through a number of comprehensive policy initiatives, including the upcoming Third National Action Plan to prevent Violence Against Women (NAPVAW III), and the Fifth Strategic Plan for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women in Cambodia (Neary Rattanak V). However, we are disturbed by the DLPO’s potential to subject women to criminal sanctions for dress and behavior that allegedly violate arbitrary and discriminatory social norms related

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Human Rights at Home Blog

Does anyone really read the Democrat and Republican Party Platforms? This year, the Republican Party apparently decided that it wasn’t even worth the time required to update their 2016 document for the 2020 election — they simply re-adopted it wholesale. Still, Professor Marjorie Hershey argues that they signal who has power within the party, and may accurately predict what to expect in the next four years from the successful candidate.

So where do human rights sit within the two platforms for this year’s election?  Here’s a simple analysis based just on a word search for the terms “human rights.”

The Democrat Party Platform uses the term “human rights” twenty-one times.  Often, the term appears in reference to foreign policy and efforts through diplomacy or trade deals to promote human rights.  Here are some examples:

    “We will stand up to the forces of authoritarianism, not aid and abet their rise, and

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George Bizos, human rights lawyer who fought apartheid in South Africa, dies at 92

George Bizos, a workhorse attorney who campaigned against apartheid in South Africa and defended his lifelong friend Nelson Mandela in court, died in Johannesburg on Wednesday. He was 92.



a close up of a man: George Bizos, a family friend of the late former President Nelson Mandela, listens to speeches during the memorial service for Ahmed Kathrada, at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Anti-apartheid activist Ahmed Kathrada, who spent 26 years in jail - many of them alongside Nelson Mandela - for working to end South Africa's previous white minority rule, died in Johannesburg on Tuesday morning. He was 87 years old.


© Themba Hadebe
George Bizos, a family friend of the late former President Nelson Mandela, listens to speeches during the memorial service for Ahmed Kathrada, at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Anti-apartheid activist Ahmed Kathrada, who spent 26 years in jail – many of them alongside Nelson Mandela – for working to end South Africa’s previous white minority rule, died in Johannesburg on Tuesday morning. He was 87 years old.

Bizos died of natural causes around 5:20 p.m. local time at his home, said Luzuko Koti, a spokesperson for the Nelson Mandela Foundation. The human rights lawyer was surrounded by his family at the time of his death, Koti told the Daily News.

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Human rights group finds violations by federal law enforcement in Portland

A team of experts with Physicians for Human Rights, a New York-based group that documents rights violations, spent seven days in Portland investigating the use of crowd control weapons against protesters and law enforcement violence directed at volunteer medical staff.

That team released its findings Tuesday ahead of a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

“PHR has concluded that the response by federal agents that it documented in Portland was disproportionate, excessive, and indiscriminate, and deployed in ways that caused severe injury to innocent civilians, including medics,” the report states.

Dr. Michele Heisler, PHR’s medical director, led the team visiting Portland. Heisler said they didn’t see any official EMTs or paramedics at the protests and that medical care was left to volunteers and civil society.

The report cites numerous instances where law enforcement deliberately targeted volunteer medics and their supplies.

“There was the case of OHSU, their tent was

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