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“Nothing about us without us” – that was the call from the indigenous rights advocate Ghazali Ohorella from the Alifuru people in the Maluku Islands, Indonesia during a panel at the climate summit in Glasgow.  This plea was echoed by many…
Georgina Wabano and her mother cooking traditional food for school children in Peawanuck, ON, December 18, 2019. : © 2019 Daron Donahue
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The SC Order is Welcome, But More Needs to Be Done for People with Disabilities

I vividly remember the first time visited a mental hospital in Mumbai. In one room, dozens of people lay on the dirty floor, the stench of urine overpowering the air. The women wore shabby green uniforms, their heads shaved because of the…
Women with perceived or actual psychosocial disabilities at a mental hospital in Mumbai
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Significant Victory Requires Holistic Approach to Implementation

I vividly remember the first time visited a mental hospital in Mumbai. In one room, dozens of people lay on the dirty floor, the stench of urine overpowering the air. The women wore shabby green…
Women lying on the ground in a room.
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Lee Bo-reum found school almost intolerable. As a young woman, she was outed to her peers as a lesbian, and was ostracized and bullied by her classmates for her sexual orientation. As the mistreatment persisted, she eventually became depressed and…
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When Isaias Cervantes, a hard of hearing young adult with autism and mental health conditions, became agitated and upset with his family, they called 911 to request support. The 911 operator sent sheriff’s deputies instead of a crisis intervention…
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Global Movement to #BreakTheChains

“I’ve lived in chains for many years. It’s very uncomfortable. I was shackled around the waist and ankle – my stomach used to hurt with the weight of the chain; it was so heavy. I used to cry.” — Akeyo, a woman with a psychosocial disability chained…
End Shackling in Indonesia
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“I felt like the world was ending for me,” an asylum seeker told us, describing her experience in immigration detention after fleeing her home country in Africa. “I thought, ‘Maybe I should have stayed back home and died there.’” She is only one of…
Image in shades of red with a fence in front of seated people.
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The Pandemic has Brought to the Fore Systemic Deficiencies Affecting Children’s Education

Like millions of other children, Mia Sulastri has been putting in extra effort to keep up with her studies. When her school in Indonesia closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 17-year-old travelled 24 kilometres by motorbike, four times a week, to…
Children attending class on the first day of school, which was damaged by an airstrike during fighting between Saudi-led coalition-backed government forces and Houthi forces, Taizz, Yemen, September 3, 2019. © 2019 Ahmad al-Basha/AFP/Getty Images
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Forget Me Not Documentary Explores Challenges of Inclusion in Education System

“There is a thing out there called inclusion and I need to get it.” In a year where a pandemic divided nations, states, and households, and systemic racism in our country and around the world continued to result in senseless murders, this line from…
Hilda Bernier and her son Emilio in the film Forget Me Not.
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I’ve spent most of my career talking to parents who moved heaven and earth to get their children an education. There was the mother from Mogadishu, Somalia, who told me she gave thanks every afternoon when her children returned safely…
A young girl wearing a face mask holds up a cell phone
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“The reason I came [to Canada] is to seek refuge, but the punishment I got for that – I never experienced that anywhere else,” Ebrahim Toure testified on November 16th from the Toronto Immigration Holding Centre at his detention review hearing, which…
People wait in a temporary detention center in Blackpool, Quebec, August 5, 2017.
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On Human Rights Day, Celebrating People Who Make the World Better

This Human Rights Day I’m celebrating my sister’s commitment to lifting up the lives of girls and giving them a chance at realizing their potential. I think of my sister Vicky as a warrior in the fight for human rights, and on December 10, I’m…
Vicky, a teacher in a girls’ school in Kenya, is dedicated to empowering girls. 
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Felipe Orozco, 45, is a Puebla resident who was diagnosed in 2003 with schizophrenia. This condition makes him have visual and auditory hallucinations, mostly when he is under severe stress. In early 2013 he had a mental health crisis that prompted his…
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Since the brutal murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi state agents two years ago, Saudi Arabia has significantly ramped up its efforts to divert public attention from its dismal human rights record. In its latest attempt, Saudi…
Since the brutal murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi state agents two years ago, Saudi Arabia has significantly ramped up its efforts to divert public attention from its dismal human rights record.
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All people should have the right to education from childhood and as a lifelong process. No one should be subjected to discrimination based on biases about whether they can benefit from receiving education or not. In the last years, Brazil’s law for…
A girl with a disability in the walled yard of an institution for people with disabilities in Rio de Janeiro.
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Harms Girls and Reduces Nation's Potential

"I didn't go back to school, because I didn't have anyone to give me advice," "Harriet" told me. "I wish someone would've come to talk to me about school and encourage me." We were sitting in   her brother's home in Migori county, western…