New Zealand has been an active supporter of human rights legal development internationally, and the Law Foundation has often backed work in this area. Earlier this year the Law Foundation launched a new human rights award – the New Zealand Law Foundation Shadow Report Award, supporting people or organisations preparing shadow reports for presentation at United Nations monitoring bodies.
At the Law Foundation’s Annual Awards dinner, hosted by Justice Minister Judith Collins at Parliament’s Grand Hall on 29 November, Chair of the Law Foundation, Mr Warwick Deuchrass announced that the inaugural award has been won by the Human Rights Foundation of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Valued at $10,000 annually, the Law Foundation’s newest award is available to help human rights advocates report on New Zealand’s compliance with its international treaty obligations, and is available each year to a non-government organisation or individual interested in Human Rights issues.
Mr Deuchrass says the Foundation knows that shadow report preparation takes considerable time and effort, and this may be preventing NGOs from doing these reports. “We are providing this award because we believe shadow reporting is a valuable contributor to the treaty monitoring process,” he said.
The Human Rights Foundation of Aotearoa New Zealand will use the award to research and report on key human rights/legal issues to CAT, CERD, HRC, CESCR and UPR.
Human Rights Foundation Chair Peter Hosking says the award will be of great assistance to the HRF’s reports to United Nations Treaty Bodies. “It will enable us to provide more in-depth reports to a wider range of UN organisations,” he said. The Law Foundation grant has enabled the HRF to appoint a part-time co-ordinator, Stéphanie Bürgenmeier, to assist with researching and preparing reports to UN treaty bodies and the UPR.