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Alex Neve at CAUT

November 28, 2008
The Credo Sculpture Project at dusk, Hampton N.B. (click image for source)

The Credo Sculpture Project at dusk, Hampton N.B. (click image for source). The seated figures are representations of John Humphrey as a boy, and an adult.

Alex Neve, the General Secretary of Amnesty International, is (right now!) speaking at CAUT Council. His talk is titled “Sixty Years of Protecting Human Rights and Defending Labour Rights: The Challenges and Opportunities Ahead.” He began by noting that 2008 is the anniversary of a series of significant dates, not the least of which is the adoption of the Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. But the six decades since have been horrendous. Canada’s history holds many proud moments, but as Neve comments, “the laurels grow distant.” He lists various ways in which the Canadian government is currently turning its back on our history: Canada’s failure of leadership with recent UN calls for a world-wide moratorium on capital punishment; Canada’s complicity with the “ugly post Sept. 11 mindset”; and Canada’s utter failure to further the rights of indigenous peoples. He spoke at length about the astonishing courtship between the Canadian government and Columbia, the site of some of the worst human rights abuses, and particularly anti-labour abuses, in the world, and invited all to participate in the following campaign:

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