Human Rights Awards

Today is International Human Rights Day, the perfect the day for the announcement of the 25th Human Rights Awards & Medals.

Robin de Crespigny was awarded the Literature Award, proudly sponsored by the Co-op, for her work, The People Smuggler

Drawn from threes years of interviews, The People Smuggler recounts the life of Ali Al Jenabi, one of the first men to be tried in Australia for people smuggling offences. the book puts a human face on those involved in he boat voyages, revealing a harrowing picture of a man who, buy turning to people smugglers  sought to escape severe repression in Iraq and seek safety for his mother and six younger brothers and sisters, only to become a ‘people smuggler’ himself. the book exposes many anti-refugee myths common in Australia and points to the actions of governments, police and intelligence agencies in encouraging anti-refugee sentiment.

Other titles nominated for the award were:

The Young People’s Medal was awarded to Krista McMeeken:

21-year old- Krista McMeeken is studying to be admitted as a solicitor and working with the WA Aboriginal Legal Service, mainly on the Stolen Wages Case, During her studies, she became a member of the WA Law Society;s Aboriginal Lawyers Committee  aiming to help provide greater access to legal opportunities for Indigenous lawyers  and has assisted in legal work on the impact of intellectual property rights in regard to gene patenting on indigenous peoples. She has won three state and national NAIDOC awards and assisted the Child Rights Taskforce to draft a UN report on Australia’s performance under the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

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While Ian Thorpe was awarded the Human Rights Medal for his work with his Foundation for Youth charity and the Close The Gap campaign.

A full list of all the winners can be found on the Human Rights Commission website here.

One thought on “Human Rights Awards”

  1. Sarah says:

    It’s wonderful that the awards were presented on this special day. However, I do believe that people shouldn’t care about human rights only today but we should do our utmost constantly to promote them in countries where people still don’t cherish the same privileges as we do. Reading news from around the world I realize how important the promotion of human rights is. In many countries they are violated on a daily basis and that’s why I think the activities carried out by various international organizations in this particular area need our support more than ever. And I am happy that my native Toronto is also commemorating the International Human Rights Day by taking part in the biggest letter-writing event of the year.

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