by Jan Logie
New Zealand’s Human Rights Record is being reviewed tonight by the United Nations Human Rights Council.
NGOs and the Human Rights Commission and UNHCR have made 248 recommendations on a wide range of topics.
Some of the areas of most concern have been the weakness of our current human rights framework, the undermining of employment rights, the lack of progress for people with disabilities, housing and buildings and health not to mention child poverty, and violence against women, immigration, LGBTI rights, racism and indigenous rights amongst many more.
The NZ Government has said its priorities are
1. Strengthening the partnership between Government and Māori
2. Improving the protection of children against abuse and neglect
3. Reducing violence within families and its impact on women and children
4. Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
5. Advancing the Constitutional review process
6. Ensuring the human rights impacts of the Canterbury Earthquakes are mitigated and accounted for in the on-going decisions around the rebuild.
The report presentation and interactive dialogue will be webcast live at http://www.un.org/webcast/unhrc/index.asp from 9am to 12.30pm, on Monday, 27 January (Geneva time), from 9pm on Monday, 27 January, to 12.30am on Tuesday, 28 January (NZ time).
I’ll be watching tonight willing the committee to ask some searching questions.