Month: March 2022

Human Rights Close to Home Youth Action Summit

May 18, 2022
8:30 AM - 5:00 PM
In Person - UConn Storrs

About the Youth Action Summit

We're pleased to announce the first annual Human Rights Close to Home Youth Action Summit!

We are offering Connecticut students an opportunity to participate in the Youth Action Summit, a major event within the Human Rights Close to Home initiative, which aims to promote youth involvement and advocacy in human rights around Connecticut. This Youth Action Summit is created and led by the Human Rights Close to Home Youth Advisory team. This is a one-day educational space for young activists and allies from around CT to come together as a community. Our goal is to provide resources and support to all attendees so that they can continue fighting for their human rights in their communities long after the Summit concludes.

Throughout the Youth Action Summit, students will participate in workshops and meet a wide range of speakers, from professional human rights advocates to fellow youth activists. Whether you are a student or educator, we welcome you to participate.

At this time, the Youth Action Summit is open to Connecticut high school students only.
If you are an educator and are in need of transportation assistance, please contact Dr. Ian McGregor at ian.mcgregor@uconn.edu

Students & Teachers – Register Now!

Interested in attending the HRCH Youth Action Summit? Please register here by May 1, 2022.

Call for Student Proposals

Students who would like to present should visit the Call for Presentation Proposals form and view the  Youth Summit Presentation Proposal Guide.

Youth Summit Sub-Themes

1) Youth In Action: Robert F. Kennedy said “Each time a man stands up for an idea, or strikes out against injustice, or acts to improve the lots of others, he sends a tiny ripple of hope …those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression…” The actions of individuals, no matter how small, matter in creating a world in which the rights of others are protected. 

2) Intersectional Human Rights: Human Rights are universal, yet everyone undergoes and brings to the table their own unique experiences and identities. Supporting human rights means more than just acknowledging, it means understanding and living out these intersections of race, gender, sexuality, class, ability and more everyday. 

3) Defenders and Leaders Close To Home: Eleanor Roosevelt famously said that unless human rights have meaning in the “little places, close to home,” they have little meaning anywhere. Human Rights are not “over-there” issues and have as much meaning in the state of Connecticut as they do in countries on the other side of the world. 

4) Youth Teaching YouthStudents are frequently the best teachers! The sharing of student experiences contributes to the development of a more complex world view for a youthful generation. Engaging with the experiences of your peers helps to create a more knowledgeable and engaged generation of activists!

5) Get Up, Stand Up For Your Rights: It’s easy to lose faith these days. Looking for the bright spots amongst the dark; those people, groups or programs speaking and standing up to say “We will” and “We can” is important in creating a more just, equitable, human rights friendly world. 

HRCH Youth Advisory Team

Kevin Maysonet, Manchester High School
Emily Aubrey, Conard High School
Trisha Chennuru, Brookfield High School
Casey Pratt, Brookfield High School
Skylar Mattice, Brookfield High School
Shirin Unvala, Center for Global Studies, Brien McMahon High School
Aureliana Brown, Manchester High School
Lydia Griffin, Conard High School
Kyra Cummins, Brookfield High School
Bella De Souza, University of Connecticut
Henry Avery, Center for Global Studies, Brien McMahon High School
Parisa Arastu, Center for Global Studies, Brien McMahon High School
Hayat Yussuf, Brookfield High School
Katie McCluney, University of Connecticut
Samantha Gove, University of Connecticut

Past Youth Action Summits

Previous years of the CT Human Rights and Youth Action Summit can be viewed here.

Human Rights Close to Home (HRCH) engages educators and youth in the development and implementation of human rights education for civic action. We empower teachers with the knowledge, skills, values, and relationships to become expert human rights and civics educators. We foster youth leadership through experiential learning opportunities that have a direct impact on our youth and their communities. 

Human Rights Close to Home is a program of Dodd Impact, a part of the Human Rights Institute at UConn.

Coupling & Coupling Compromises in Supplier Factories’ Responses to Worker Activism

Thursday, March 31, 2022
12:00pm - 1:15pm
Virtual Event

About This Workshop:

The Business and Human Rights Workshop is dedicated to the development and discussion of works-in-progress and other non-published academic research. Read below for the abstract of Prof. Jodi Short's upcoming paper, the focus of this workshop. 

Many companies have adopted corporate social responsibility (CSR) policies in response to activist pressure, but ensuring the implementation of these policies is challenging. Recognizing the paucity of research on the effect of contentious activism on companies’ coupling of CSR policies and practices in the private politics and (de)coupling literatures, we posit that companies engage in “coupling compromises” when faced with such institutional pressure—improving their practices and more tightly coupling them with CSR policies in the domain contested by activists, but relaxing the coupling of policy and practice in competing CSR domains. Furthermore, we theorize that the nature and extent of coupling compromises can be explained by the interaction of activism with organizational structures that construct managerial perceptions of issue salience and internal frictions to change. We test our theory in the context of global supply chain factories’ compliance with CSR policies on working conditions when they face local worker activism. Analyzing 3,495 audits of 2,352 factories in 114 Chinese cities from 2012 to 2015, we find that worker activism over wages-and-benefits issues pushes factories to improve their wages-and-benefits practices and couple them more tightly with CSR policies, but these factories concurrently loosen the coupling between policy and practice in the domain of occupational health and safety. Both effects are stronger in factories with organizational structures that foreground the salience of wages and benefits issues and mitigate friction to changing organizational practices. These findings make significant contributions to the literatures on private politics, (de)coupling, and global supply chain labor practices.

Paper - Coupling & Coupling Compromises in Supplier Factories' Responses to Worker Activism

Access to the full paper is available in advance below, courtesy of Jodi Short and co-authors Yanhua Bird, Boston University Questrom School of Business, and Michael W. Toffel, Harvard Business School.

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Presenter:

Prof. Jodi Short, UC Hastings Law

Discussant:

Prof. Vivek Soundararajan, University of Bath

This event will not be recorded.

This event is sponsored by the Business and Human Rights Initiative, a partnership by Dodd Human Rights Impact, the UConn School of Business, & Human Rights Institute. 

Dialogues for Common Ground: American Identity & Connecticut’s Civic Reconstruction

About the Program:

Democracy is a Connecticut tradition. The “Constitution State” has for centuries been a place of evolving civic life, and has often inspired and informed the national approach to the rights of individuals and the electoral process. The 21st century brings new challenges and opportunities to innovative political engagement: locally, the “Land of Steady Habits” is a racially and ethnically diverse, economically unequal, and politically decentralized state; nationally, our democracy is under pressure from polarization, disinformation, and even violence. How might Connecticut communities harness the state’s long history of political innovation and reconstruct robust civic practices to address our present moment and look to the future?

The “American Identity and Connecticut’s Civic Reconstruction” program brings the conversation back to first principles, to the founding of the American democratic experiment, and aims to foster meaningful and informed discussion around the values that form the basis of our nation. In doing so, it encourages everyone to learn more about our shared history and to value and participate in our democracy. These online participatory conversations will be run on the “Encounters” dialogue model; read more about it here.

Join us!

You are warmly invited to take part in a series of interactive explorations of critical documents of American identity and their role in our lives today: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.

This program aims to foster meaningful and informed discussion around the values that form the basis of our national experience by bringing the conversation back to first principles, to the founding of the American democratic experiment. In doing so, it encourages us to learn more about our shared history and to value and participate in our democracy. To participate, please register below.

March 22 – The Declaration of Independence

The Declaration of Independence
Hosted by Democracy & Dialogues Initiative
Tuesday, March 22. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register in advance for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEuceGhrj0oHdGDL_I83vMxzxBLvd4Ay-iv

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

April 5 – The Constitution

The Constitution
Hosted by the Old Connecticut State House
Tuesday, April 5. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register in advance for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwvcOGoqDIjGdwOTaLCSltZQMhFIgxsYuWG

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

May 3 – The Bill of Rights

The Bill of Rights
Hosted by the Hartford Public Library
Tuesday, May 3. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register here for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEqc-GqrDsoHdN1j6x8PHigbGDPXPz6Srxi

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

The Encounters Series is dedicated to fostering unexpected conversations around divisive issues and obscure knowledge. The program dives deeply into subjects that are of interest to the Greater Hartford community through facilitated, small-group dialogues followed by a question-and-answer style conversation with UConn faculty and community partners.

The Democracy & Dialogues Initiative is part of Dodd Human Rights Impact and supported by the Office of Global Affairs, the Office of the Provost, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Humanities Institute, UConn Extension, and the Division of Student Affairs’ Parent's Fund.

Environmental Rights in Cultural Context – Perspectives from Law and Anthropology

Tuesday, March 22, 2022
2:00pm - 3:30pm
Hybrid Event

Join us!

In Person:
This event will be held in-person with the option to join by WebEx. The Colloquium will be hosted in the Heritage Room of Homer Babbidge Library, HBL 4-214.

By WebEx:
Use the following link to join the meeting room at 2:00pm: http://s.uconn.edu/hbl4420webex
There is no password necessary to join; simply click 'Join Meeting' on the page to be connected.

About This Event:

Environmental rights, such as the right to a healthy or clean environment, are experiencing increasing recognition within domestic constitutions as well as international human rights instruments and institutions. In parallel, more ecocentric approaches promote so-called rights of nature. Using methods of law and anthropology, this talk will assess to what extent such rights respond to environmental stress of local communities exposed, for instance, to large scale mining, hydro dams or climate change.

Presenter:

Dirk Hanschel studied law at the Universities of Marburg and Heidelberg, Germany, as well as the London School of Economics (LSE), before taking his doctoral/post-doctoral degrees at the University of Mannheim, Germany. He furthermore holds a Master of Comparative Law (Mannheim/Adelaide). After working as a reader at the University of Aberdeen for around two years, he became a professor of German, European and International Public Law at the University of Halle, Germany, in 2015. His research focuses inter alia on topics of environmental law and human rights, topics of comparative constitutional law (such as federalism), the law of international organizations, as well as law and anthropology. In 2019 he became a Fellow at the Max-Planck-Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle, where he conducts an interdisciplinary project on "Environmental Rights in Cultural Context", together with a group of doctoral and post-doctoral scholars. In autumn 2021 he was appointed Martin Flynn Global Law Professor at UConn Law School.

The Colloquium is sponsored by the Human Rights Institute, the School of Law, and the Connecticut/Baden Württemberg Human Rights Research Consortium.

This event is hybrid. We encourage you to join us in person or to join us by WebEx. It will be recorded.

Dialogues for Common Ground: American Identity & Connecticut’s Civic Reconstruction

About the Program:

Democracy is a Connecticut tradition. The “Constitution State” has for centuries been a place of evolving civic life, and has often inspired and informed the national approach to the rights of individuals and the electoral process. The 21st century brings new challenges and opportunities to innovative political engagement: locally, the “Land of Steady Habits” is a racially and ethnically diverse, economically unequal, and politically decentralized state; nationally, our democracy is under pressure from polarization, disinformation, and even violence. How might Connecticut communities harness the state’s long history of political innovation and reconstruct robust civic practices to address our present moment and look to the future?

The “American Identity and Connecticut’s Civic Reconstruction” program brings the conversation back to first principles, to the founding of the American democratic experiment, and aims to foster meaningful and informed discussion around the values that form the basis of our nation. In doing so, it encourages everyone to learn more about our shared history and to value and participate in our democracy. These online participatory conversations will be run on the “Encounters” dialogue model; read more about it here.

Join us!

You are warmly invited to take part in a series of interactive explorations of critical documents of American identity and their role in our lives today: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.

This program aims to foster meaningful and informed discussion around the values that form the basis of our national experience by bringing the conversation back to first principles, to the founding of the American democratic experiment. In doing so, it encourages us to learn more about our shared history and to value and participate in our democracy. To participate, please register below.

This series of dialogues is funded by Connecticut Humanities through the A More Perfect Union granting program of the National Endowment for the Humanities

March 22 – The Declaration of Independence

The Declaration of Independence
Hosted by Democracy & Dialogues Initiative
Tuesday, March 22. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register in advance for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEuceGhrj0oHdGDL_I83vMxzxBLvd4Ay-iv

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

April 5 – The Constitution

The Constitution
Hosted by the Old Connecticut State House
Tuesday, April 5. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register in advance for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwvcOGoqDIjGdwOTaLCSltZQMhFIgxsYuWG

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

May 3 – The Bill of Rights

The Bill of Rights
Hosted by the Hartford Public Library
Tuesday, May 3. 6:00-8:00 pm ET

Register here for this event:
https://uconn-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEqc-GqrDsoHdN1j6x8PHigbGDPXPz6Srxi

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the dialogue.

The Encounters Series is dedicated to fostering unexpected conversations around divisive issues and obscure knowledge. The program dives deeply into subjects that are of interest to the Greater Hartford community through facilitated, small-group dialogues followed by a question-and-answer style conversation with UConn faculty and community partners.

The Democracy & Dialogues Initiative is part of Dodd Human Rights Impact and supported by the Office of Global Affairs, the Office of the Provost, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Humanities Institute, UConn Extension, and the Division of Student Affairs’ Parent's Fund.

Youth Seeking Refuge: U.S. Immigration Policy, Mobility Justice, & Children’s Rights

Monday, April 11, 2022
1:00pm - 2:30pm
Panel Discussion (In-person & Livestream)

Panel Discussion

Join Us!
On Monday April 11th, Dodd Impact, El Instituto, and the Human Rights Institute, in collaboration with Skidmore College, invite you to the opening of an exhibit on children’s art created in the MPP camp of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

To mark the opening of the exhibit, a panel of faculty and activists will discuss the current situation of children in refugee camps created by the United States’ “Remain in Mexico” policy, as well as pressing concerns of youth who have arrived in CT.

In person: The Colloquium will be hosted in the Konover Auditorium in the
Dodd Center for Human Rights - DODD 166.

Livestream: Join us online at 1:00pm via http://www.kaltura.com/tiny/uyrei
Joining us virtually? You can still submit a question for the Q&A by clicking here.

Speakers

Dr. Anne Gebelein, University of Connecticut

Dr. Anne Gebelein,  University of Connecticut
Associate Director of El Instituto and
Associate Professor in Residence, Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Dr. Gebelein received her doctorate, M. Phil., and Master’s in Hispanic Literatures from Yale University Dept. of Spanish and Portuguese. Prior to her position at UConn, she worked as an educational consultant for the Anti-Defamation League and the Coordinating Council for Children in Crisis, and as a translator in health care and law enforcement settings. Anne Gebelein teaches a wide variety of courses in Latino and Latin American Studies, with a focus on migration, human rights, and border studies. She is faculty Co-Chair of Service Learning for the university, the ECE coordinator for Latin American Studies, and she directs community outreach efforts for El Instituto.

Dr. Diana Barnes, Skidmore College

Dr. Diana Barnes, Skidmore College
Senior Teaching Professor of Spanish

Diana Barnes, PhD, is a Senior Teaching Professor at Skidmore College.  She began crossing the US/Mexico border as a toddler with her family at the San Ysidro point of entry near San Diego to visit her grandfather in Sonora, Mexico.  Over the decades, she has witnessed not only changes to the physical fence itself, but as well, the construct’s mythical, psychological, and political forces that project from the steel and concrete barrier.    Professor Barnes teaches courses about the US/Mexico border, as well as Spanish language & literature.  As a  life-long border crosser she holds a fundamental belief that the study of geographically contrived lines of division provides a unique critical lens into the state of humanity

Lucca Lucero de Alva, MPP Camp Ciudad Juárez

Lucca Lucero de Alva,
Volunteer teacher in MPP Camp, Ciudad Juárez;
World Organization for Peace representative

Born in Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, Lucero Claudia De Alva Fernandez is an industrial engineer by trade, currently pursuing a master’s degree in Business Administration. She is the mother of 4 adult children--Daniela, Victoria Eugenia, Juan Pablo and Martha Isabel—and a business-owner. Her company, English Education Services, with provides English-Spanish translation, classes and interpreting services to the maquiladora industry since 1999.

Lucero is the author of the children's story "Pita y los girasoles" from which a peace project called "Sembrando Paz" (Sowing Peace) was born, through which she has been able to reach more than 50,000 children in schools in the state of Chihuahua and throughout the country, as well as some schools in the United States.

Since 2019 Lucero has been in charge of the "Children and Youth for Peace" program, a title awarded by the World Organization for Peace. In 2018 she was named "Distinguished Woman" of Juarez by the Ibero-American Women's Group and nominated for the title "Woman of the Year" by the group of professional women of Cd. Juarez.

Lucero is a dedicated volunteer and lover of the children of her city and the world. She volunteers in support of our migrant brothers and sisters, for whom she have been working since February 13, 2019, the day the first part of a caravan of migrants arrived in Ciudad Juarez. She have been part of the team that built the network of shelters for migrants, and feels fortunate to enable spaces within shelters that function as schools for the children who live in them, managing to get their education certified by the Federal Government (Secretary of Public Education).

Katia Daley, CT Students for a Dream

Katia Daley, CT Students for a Dream
Healthcare Campaign Organizer

Exhibition Debut – “Painting the Border: A Child’s Voice”

The youngest asylum seekers at our southern border have something to say about the U.S. policies that have left them stranded in one of the most dangerous cities in the world. See what happens when policy hits the ground in Ciudad Juarez, through the eyes of a child.

In all, thirty-two paintings make up the exhibit. Each is produced by children living in shelters or on the streets in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. They reveal images of young migrants’ homes, journeys, fears, and hopes.

Blue Image of Two Figures Embracing - Victoria de Alba, Ciudad Juárez y El Paso (21 years old)

Victoria de Alba, Ciudad Juárez y El Paso (21 years old)

View the Exhibit

The exhibit "Painting the Border: A Child's Voice" began as a project to offer a day of fun in a safe space to the youngest MPP recipients in Ciudad Juárez. The project was a collaborative effort initiated by Diana Barnes, a Skidmore College Senior Teaching Professor, and organized in Juárez by World Organization for Peace representative and children's author Lucero de Alva. El Paso muralist Cimi Alvarado worked with the young painters as well, teaching them about storytelling through art, and guiding them to paint their own stories.

The day of fun was held on August 21, 2019, months after the MPP was initiated, and less than three weeks after a gunman opened fire in an El Paso Walmart, targeting Mexican shoppers and killing 23 people, including children. Some of the Juárez migrant children were aware of the deadly attack when they painted their fears of the violence that surrounded them.

The young artists, ages 4 - 18, were among the more than 71,000 asylum seekers stranded in Mexico border cities between January 2019 and January 2021, according to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse. They were mainly from Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala.

Today, two and a half years after the paintings were produced, a Biden-era version of the MPP is still in place. Migrants continue to be refused entry under this policy and others, designed to reinforce a myriad of iterations of the wall that separates the United States from Mexico.

This event is sponsored by Dodd Impact, El Instituto, and the Human Rights Institute at the University of Connecticut, with invaluable support from Skidmore College.

We welcome you to view the exhibit in-person at The Dodd Center for Human Rights beginning April 11, 2022.