Liz O'Donnell to Address Major Human Rights Forum
Liz O'Donnell, T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs, will address the Third Annual NGO Forum on Human Rights to be held in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, on Saturday, 1 July 2000 from 9.00am until 6.00pm.
The NGO Forum was established by the Department of Foreign Affairs to facilitate a broad-based discussion on a range of human rights issues, with the emphasis primarily on foreign policy. It is an annual event, which is intended to strengthen the links between the Department and the wider NGO community.
A number of human rights issues will be addressed in panel format:
- racism in Ireland, including a discussion on racism and the media;
- issues relating to refugees and asylum seekers and immigrants;
- the soon-to-be established Human Rights Commission;
- human rights of persons with disabilities; and
- the proposed EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The panels will be comprised of representatives of a broad range of NGOs, academics, the media and human rights experts.
Speaking before the Forum, the Minister of State said:
"This event is now an established feature on the human rights calendar in Ireland. It brings together a significant cross-section of Irish society and gives a platform for a broad-based democratic debate on key justice and political issues".
The NGO Forum is expected to be attended by more than 350 delegates.
A copy of the Forum programme is attached.
3rd Annual Department of Foreign Affairs/NGO Forum on Human Rights
Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Saturday, 1 July 2000
9.30 Keynote address by Ms Liz O'Donnell, T.D.,
Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs with special responsibility for Overseas Development Assistance and Human Rights
First panel session
1. Racism in Ireland
Chair: Dr Anastasia Crickley, National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism
Panelists: Mr Niall Crowley, Chief Executive Officer, Equality Authority
Ms Joan Harbison, Chief Commissioner, Equality Commission
Mr Patrick Yu, Northern Ireland Council for Ethnic Minorities
Mr Martin Collins, Pavee Point
2. Refugees, asylum seekers and immigrants
- a rights-based approach
Venue: Johnston Room
Chair: Ms Ursula Fraser, Amnesty International
Panelists: Mr Peter O'Mahoney, Irish Refugee Council
Mr Sam Jerran, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Dr Colin Harvey, Assistant Director, Human Rights Centre,
Queen's University of Belfast
3. Human Rights Commission - what difference can it make?
Venue: Great Hall
Chair: Mr Tom O'Malley, NUI Galway
Panelists: Professor Brice Dickson, Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission
Mr Michael Farrell, Irish Council for Civil Liberties
Mr Paul Mageean, Committee on the Administration of Justice
4. Human rights of persons with disabilities
Venue: Drawing Room
Presentation by Mr Eamonn Mac Aodha ‘Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities - Setting International Standards'
Chair: Dr Arthur O'Reilly, Rehabilitation International
Panelists: Mr Andre Gubbels, European Commission
Ms Monica Wilson, Disability Action
Mr Chrissy Lynch, National Disability Authority/CARE
Ms Selina Bonnie, Forum for People with Disabilities
11.30 First panel session resumes
1.00 Break for lunch
2.30 Second panel session
1. Racism and the media
Venue: Johnston Room
Chair: Ms Marie McGonagle, NUI Galway
Panelists: Mr Kensika Monshengwo, National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism
Mr. John Cooney, Ireland on Sunday
Ms Nuala Haughey, Irish Times
2. EU Charter of Fundamental Rights - a strategy for Europe
Venue: Great Hall
Chair: Dr Gerard Quinn, NUI Galway
Panelists: H.E. Mahon Hayes, Alternate Representative of the Taoiseach at the Convention responsible for drafting the Charter
4.00 Second panel session resumes
5.30 Concluding observations by Mr Donncha O'Connell, Forum Rapporteur
5.45 Closing remarks
6.00 Reception hosted by Minister of State, Ms Liz O'Donnell, T.D., in ChapelTop