ALEX NEVE, Secretary-General of Amnesty International Canada (English).
Presented by CIPS, the Conflict and Human Rights Student Association (CHRA) and the Fragile States Research Network (FSRN).
Free. In English. Registration is not required. Seating is limited and available on a first come, first served basis. A reception will follow. Business-casual attire is strongly recommended.
Globally and nationally, the commitment of governments to the fundamentals of refugee protection has been strained and, worse, slipped precipitously in recent years. News stories are replete with reports of boatloads of escaping refugees capsizing, and those on board drowning, in many parts of the world. Countries, including Canada, have focused on tightening up refugee systems with punitive and restrictive new policies geared to keep refugees out. Yet the need for refugee protection is as urgent and pressing as ever, particularly in the light of the terrible crisis in Syria. Lost in the debate often is clear recognition that protecting refugees is more than a matter of humanitarian impulse, budgetary decisions or border control. At its very heart refugee protection is an essential matter of human rights. Refugees flee because of human rights violations. They experience further violations while fleeing. And their desire and need to return home in safety or rebuild a new life elsewhere is all about human rights. Alex Neve will lay out the human rights framework that should and must be at the heart of every choice and every decision governments take when it comes to refugee protection.
Alex Neve became Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada’s English-speaking Branch in January 2000. He has participated in numerous Amnesty International research missions throughout Africa, Latin America and Canada, and has been a trial observer several times at Guantánamo Bay. He has represented Amnesty International at international meetings such as the Summit of the Americas and the G8 Summit, and has appeared before numerous Canadian parliamentary committees as well as various UN and Inter-American human rights bodies. He appears and writes regularly in the media and speaks to audiences across the country on a range of human rights topics. In prior work, he practiced law in Toronto, both privately and in a community legal aid clinic. He has also taught international human rights and refugee law at Osgoode Hall Law School and served on Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board. He holds a Masters degree in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex, and is an Officer of the Order of Canada.