Marino Institute of Education (Dublin) Explores Links with ERI

marino From the moment Dr. Anne O’Gara (left), President of Marino Institute of Education, an associate college of Trinity College Dublin (TCD), and Dr Barbara O’Toole (right), stepped off the plane from Dublin in Geneva they were enthusiastic to attend, the 22nd Session of the Human Rights Council under the auspices of Edmund Rice International (ERI).

After an introduction to the global and in-country advocacy and human rights work of ERI by the Executive Director, Brian Bond, they attended a Human Rights Council (HRC) meeting and a number of side-events organised by NGOs and Permanent Missions of various States.

The Human Rights Council was considering a report from the Special Rapporteur for Myanmar, Mr Tomas Ojea Quintana following his visit in February 2013.  In response various States made oral statements that included recommendations, for example that the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) establish a field presence in the country.  The Government was advised to seek assistance from the OHCHR to support of its reform efforts.  A recommendation that was well supported by many Permanent Missions.  Our visitors saw the nations of the world keeping one another accountable for ensuring their people realize and enjoy their inherent human rights.

The side-events attended, included ones on global education, on the rights of women in countries such as Bahrain and on the protection of human right defenders.  Through these experiences they were able to get a sense of how the Human Rights Council (HRC) instruments operate.

The debriefing sessions explained the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a mechanism of the HRC used to review the human rights record of each of the 193 UN member countries.  This mechanism is the main instrument used by ERI in its work of bringing the stories of human rights violations to the HRC from the 30 countries where the Edmund Rice network is present.

Ideas were then shared about possible links between ERI and the Marino Institute of Education in Dublin where hundreds of Brothers and teachers have done their teacher education over the years.  The Marino Institute of Education is committed to ensuring human rights education is embedded in the curriculum so that their graduates understand and advocate for the rights of all persons no matter what their social status or ethnicity.   The dialogue has just begun!

Peter Harney cfc

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