Congratulations to Professor Geraldine Van Bueren and all the the new commissioners at the Equality and Human Rights Commission

Posted on November 28, 2009. Filed under: Books, Human Rights | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

New Commissioner appointments have just been announced to Britain’s Equality and Human Rights Commission. It is envisaged that the three-year appointments, announced by Harriet Harman, Minister for Women and Equality, will bolster most considerably the Commission’s ongoing and future work on gender, sex orientation, race, religion and belief, age, disability, and human rights in general, as well as its work with employers in both the private and public sector.

Commissioner Van Bueren - courtesy of

Of the appointments, all worthy and deserving in their own way, we would like to single out for particular congratulations, Professor Geraldine Van Bueren. Professor, or should we say Commissioner Van Bueren, has not only an illustrious legal and academic career to her credit, but is also a distinguished author of some very important core human rights texts that we should bring to the attention of our readers.

They are (in chronological order):

*Child Rights in Europe: Convergence and Divergence in Judicial Protection

*Article 40: Child Criminal Justice (Commentary on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, 40)

*Childhood Abused: Protecting Children Against Torture, Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Treatment and Punishment

*International Law on the Rights of the Child (International Studies in Human Rights)

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2009 Human Rights Awards – Literature/Non-Fiction shortlist announced

Posted on November 23, 2009. Filed under: Books, Events, Human Rights | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2009 shortlists have just been announced for the prestigious Australian Human Rights Awards conducted annually by the highly regarded Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC).

The AHRC’s President, Catherine Branson, commented that the shortlists were judged from more than two hundred high quality entrants nominated from across Australia.

“The shortlists selection is always an inspiring and difficult process for the judging panels due to the extraordinary effort and achievement displayed in the entries,” Ms Branson said.

“I congratulate all those who entered the Awards for their outstanding commitment to protecting and promoting human rights in Australia and, in particular, I congratulate these entrants who have been shortlisted.”

The full shortlists can be found at, but we have included the Literature Non-Fiction Award shortlist below for relevance to this blog.

Award winners will be presented with their trophies at the annual gala luncheon at the Grand Ballroom, Sheraton on the Park Hotel, Sydney, on Thursday, 10 December 2009. Winners of the prestigious 2009 Human Rights Medal and Young People’s Human Rights Medal will also be announced on the day, which will have ABC Television personality and 2009 Andrew Olle Media lecturer Julian Morrow, as MC.

The Human Rights Book Review finds it quite strange that Julian Morrow of Chaser infamy can be included as MC on the day particlularly after the controversy surrounding a recent skit in his show which made fun of sick and dying children. If the commission are serious about childrens rights, and they seem to be based on recent media releases, do they honestly think it wise appointing Mr Morrow with his teams black mark on human rights so recent? Something to ponder. Here is the offendiing skit. You be the judge and decide whether having Julian Morrow as MC is still too soon after the Chasers ‘Make a realistic wish’ clip.

All information about the 2009 Human Rights Medals and Awards can be found on the website at, including the Award categories, the judges criteria, winners from previous years and how to get your ticket to the Human Rights Awards 2009 ceremony.

Literature Non-Fiction Award Shortlist

The Native Title Market by David Ritter
avaliable from Amazon US, EU/UK, Canada

Black Politics: Inside the complexity of Aboriginal political culture
Sarah Maddison

Culture is… Australian Stories Across Cultures: An Anthology
Anne – Marie Smith (Editor)
The Multicultural Writers Association of Australia

Blind Conscience
Margot O’Neill

Navigating Teenage Depression: A guide for parents and professionals
Gordon Parker and Kerrie Eyers

All these titles are avaliable in Australia and New Zealand from

The Nile -Australia's Largest Online Bookstore - Over 1.5 Million Book Titles

The Nile - New Zealand's Largest Online Bookstore - Over 1.5 Million Book Titles

Postscript: 11th December, 2009. The winners were announced yesterday by the AHRC and the Literature/Non-Fiction prize was awarded to Margot O’Neill for Blind Conscience.

Blind Conscience by Margot O’Neill - this years Literature Non-Fiction Award winner conducted by the Australian Human Rights Commission

In the Commissions own words “Blind Conscience tells the stories of the people who struggled to get asylum seekers out of detention and to change government policy. It looks at what was the tipping point that made both well-known and ordinary Australians decide to become involved with asylum seekers. The book is a heartfelt, moving and inspirational examination of the point when doing nothing ceases to become an option. Margot is from Coogee, NSW.”

The Human Rights Book review would like to commend Margot on her prize and we look forward to reading her book at some point in the very near future.

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