Dodd Impact Events

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
Joining us virtually? You can still submit a question for the Q&A by clicking here.


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.

Russia’s Crackdown on Religious Minorities, Journalists, & Human Rights Defenders

Tuesday, March 8, 2022
12:00pm - 2:00pm
Virtual Event

About This Event:

Join us for a discussion on the escalating persecution of religious minorities, journalists, and human rights defenders currently under way in Russia. Over the past several years, Russian authorities have labeled Jehovah’s Witnesses as “extremist” organizations and used anti-extremism laws to launch a campaign of arrests, harassment, and intimidation. During this event, we’ll explore the history and current reality of this case of religious persecution and hear first-hand accounts from community members.

Dr. Zoe Knox of the University of Leicester will deliver the keynote address, followed by reflections from targeted members of the Russian Jehovah's Witness community. Glenn Mitoma, Director of Dodd Impact, will moderate.

Keynote Speaker:

Zoe Knox is Associate Professor of Modern Russian History at the University of Leicester. Her research explores issues of religious tolerance and intolerance in the modern world, in Russia and beyond. Her publications include Russian Society and the Orthodox Church: Religion in Russia after Communism (Routledge, 2005); Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Secular World: From the 1870s to the Present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018); and Voices of the Voiceless: Religion, Communism, and the Keston Archive (Baylor University Press, 2019), co-edited with J. deGraffenried.


Dmitri Antsybor, Kirill Kravchenko, & Aleksandr Tsvetkov


Glenn Mitoma, Director of Dodd Impact

This event is virtual and will be hosted on Zoom. Click the link above to register to attend. This event may be recorded.

Business, Human Rights, & the Triple Planetary Crisis

Thursday, March 10, 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. Sara Seck's upcoming paper, the focus of this workshop. The full paper is available to view and download below in advance of the workshop.

According to the United Nations, the world is facing a triple planetary crisis of climate change, nature (biodiversity) loss, and pollution and waste, with the most egregious consequences felt by those least responsible. These crises are also intertwined: nature-based solutions are promoted as climate change solutions even as heat domes fuel forest fires; extraction of minerals for green energy solutions negatively impacts biodiversity and creates pollution and waste; and carbon major companies are also among the largest producers of plastic pollution. International human rights law is increasingly grappling with environmental rights and responsibilities, as evidenced by the work of special rapporteurs on the environment and on toxic substances, among others. This paper will consider how business and human rights instruments could help to guide solutions to triple planetary crisis that are attentive to the need to reduce overconsumption by the rich while supporting equity and resilience of those most vulnerable to planetary crisis.

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Prof. Sara Seck, Dalhousie University


Prof. Chiara Macchi, Wageningen University

This event will not be recorded.

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

Model Contract Clauses for Human Rights

Wednesday, February 9, 2022
12:30pm - 1:45pm
Virtual Event

About this Event:

A presentation and discussion of the American Bar Association’s Model Contract Clauses for Human Rights Project.

Presenters: Prof. Sarah Dadush, Rutgers Law School, Olivia Windham Stewart, & David Snyder, American University

Commentator: Prof. Erika George, University of Utah


Sarah Dadush is a Professor of Law at Rutgers Law School. Her scholarship explores innovative legal mechanisms for improving the social and environmental performance of multinational corporations. She established and directs the Law School's Business & Human Rights Law Program and co-leads an ABA Business Law Section Working Group that has developed a comprehensive toolkit for upgrading international supply contracts to better protect workers’ human rights. Before joining the Rutgers faculty, Dadush served as Legal Counsel for the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized agency of the United Nations based in Rome. Prior to that, she was a Fellow at NYU’s Institute for International Law and Justice and an Associate Attorney at the global law firm, Allen & Overy. She received her J.D. and LL.M. in International and Comparative Law from Duke University School of Law in 2004.

Olivia Windham Stewart is an independent business and human rights specialist based in the UK, and a Senior Fellow and Deputy Director of the Business and Human Rights Law Program at the Center for Corporate Law and Governance, Rutgers Law School. As an independent specialist, Olivia has worked on a range of projects to increase corporate accountability and due diligence across sectors, including an OECD due diligence alignment assessment, a European Citizens’ Initiative for Living Wages, a range of multistakeholder initiatives in the garment and footwear industry and research, training and facilitation projects on labour rights and BHR issues for a number of organisations across sectors. Prior to working independently, Olivia was on the Labour Rights team at Laudes Foundation (formerly C&A Foundation) and at Impactt UK. She has worked extensively in production countries around the world, particularly in South and South East Asia and has been a contributing member of the Principled Purchasing Project to draft model contract clauses to protect human rights in international supply chains since March 2020. Olivia holds a MSc with Distinction from SOAS University, London.

David V. Snyder is professor of law and director of the Business Law Program at the American University Washington College of Law. His work is primarily in contracts and commercial law, including their international and comparative aspects. He has been a professor of law at Tulane and Indiana (Bloomington) and has been a regular visiting professor at the University of Paris II (Panthéon-Assas) since 2012.  He has also been a visiting professor at Boston University and William and Mary. He is a graduate of Tulane Law School and Yale College and clerked on the Fifth Circuit.

Erika George is the Samuel D. Thurman Professor of Law at the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law and directs the Obert C. and Grace A. Tanner Humanities Center at the University of Utah. She teaches constitutional law, international human rights law, international environmental law, international business transactions, international trade and seminars on business and human rights, inequality, and corporate citizenship and sustainability. She was the Interim Director of the University's Tanner Center for Human Rights and the University's 2018-2019 Presidential Leadership Fellow. She is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and serves on the board of the American Bar Association Center for Human Rights. She earned her B.A. with honors from the University of Chicago and her J.D. from Harvard Law School, where she served as Articles Editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. She also holds an M.A. in International Relations from the University of Chicago. She is the author of Incorporating Rights: Strategies to Advance Corporate Accountability (Oxford University Press, 2021).

This event will not be recorded.

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

Human Rights Day 2021

Human Rights Day | Civics Education and Democracy Today: Bringing Human Rights Close to Home

Friday, December 10, 2021

Join us for the virtual event.
Register Now

In recognition of this year’s International Human Rights Day – Friday, December 10, 2021 – Dodd Human Rights Impact and the Neag School of Education will host a roundtable focused on supporting the advancement of civics and human rights education in public schools.

With opening remarks from U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, the roundtable will discuss how our students, teachers, schools, and universities can advance democracy and human rights. In particular, we’ll explore how to better foster student voice and democratic participation through civics, human rights education and school-community partnerships.

Welcome & Introduction
Professor Jason Irizarry
Dean, Neag School of Education

Professor Jason Irizarry

Opening Remarks
Miguel Cardona
U.S. Secretary of Education

US Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona

Roundtable Discussion Featuring
Former U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd
Assistant Professor Glenn Mitoma, Director of Dodd Human Rights Impact
Abigail Esposito, Conard High School teacher
Tyler Gleen, Teacher Education M.A. Student, Neag (’22)
Zoe Maldonado, Civic Leadership High School Student (’23)

The day’s events are also part of President Biden’s December 2021 Summit for Democracy, offering an opportunity to listen, learn, and engage with diverse voices committed to a global democratic renewal.

The roundtable is the first event of Dodd Impact’s new initiative Human Rights Close to Home – a three-year pilot program that hopes to directly engage key stakeholders, including educators and youth, in the development and implementation of a model of human rights education for civic action.

Contractual Deterrence and the Ethical Supply Chain

Tuesday, November 30, 2021
1:00pm - 2:15pm
Virtual Event

Workshop on Contractual Deterrence and the Ethical Supply Chain

Presenter: Robert Bird, University of Connecticut School of Business

Discussant: Gastón de los Reyes, Glasgow Caledonian New York College

A harmful byproduct of the global economy is the proliferation of abuses in global supply chains. Too often lead firms and suppliers do not effectively collaborate. Lead firms require human rights and sustainability standards while also demanding extremely low cost goods and fast production deadlines. Suppliers faced with the impossible choice of financial survival or compliance with ethical standards, attempt to evade lead firm demands. The result is an illusion of governance that prioritizes investigations over actual changes and perpetuates “slow violence” against local environments and vulnerable populations.

To respond to this problem, this manuscript proposes a new paradigm I call ‘contractual deterrence.’ Contractual deterrence leverages a centuries-old theory of criminal deterrence, reinterprets it to incorporate a modern understanding of sanctions and rewards, and applies the theory to the contractual context of the modern global supply chain. Contractual deterrence is based upon three prongs: that enforcement of ethical supply chain standards must be predictably certain, equitably significant, and swiftly implementable. This manuscript explores these prongs and shows how the theory advances sustainability and human rights literatures. This manuscript also argues for a new multistakeholder theory of social responsibility that challenges western-dominated thinking and encourages a joint and equal partnership between lead firm and supplier in order to address pressing problems facing supply chains today.

The Business and Human Rights Workshop is dedicated to the development and discussion of works-in-progress and other non-published academic research. The paper will be distributed to registered participants prior to the Workshop. This event will not be recorded.

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