NEW: The presentations from RightsNI are now available on YouTube! See http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8ZGdEddLQcFsKBRJLTNufA for the presentations!

Thanks to Matt Bonner for the audiovisual and editing work.


11 December 2011

RightsNI.org, supported by Amnesty International and the Committee on the Administration of Justice (CAJ), present RightsNI Live! – an evening of great ideas from great speakers on December 11th 2011 in Crumlin Road Gaol.

An exciting list of expert speakers addressing a wide range of human rights themes are coming together for an evening of ideas in the style of ‘TEDtalks’

A full list of speakers will be confirmed and published soon.

The event couldn’t be held at a more appropriate and thought-provoking building – Belfast’s Crumlin Road Gaol, the city’s main prison for 150 years. Through its history, it was the unwelcome home for suffragettes, internees, paramilitaries and even ODCs, ‘ordinary decent criminals’. Some whom were destined for the prison’s gallows. As well as an evening of fantastic speakers, there will be an opportunity to see part of the Gaol.

Tickets (£6 and £4 unwaged) can be booked online at:  http://rightsni.eventbrite.co.uk/ 

Date: Tuesday 11 December, 2012

Time: 7.30pm – 22.00

Venue: Crumlin Road Gaol.

Speakers include (more details below):

Hector Aristizabal, ImaginAction.  ‘Social Justice Theatre’

Nicola Browne, Director (Policy), PPR Project.  ‘Small Places’

Sammy Douglas, MLA (Title to be confirmed)

Daniel Holder, Committee on the Administration of Justice (CAJ) ‘Is it still part of life here? Stop and Search in Northern Ireland 2012’

Frank Jannuzi, Deputy executive director of Amnesty International USA and Head of its Washington, DC. ‘Obama, the United States and human rights: the next four years’

Chris Moore, journalist / writer.  ‘Securing justice for clerical child abuse victims’

Ruth O’Reilly, editor of The Detail. ‘Investigative journalism and human rights ‘

Hannah Russell, QUB PhD candidate. ‘The Syrian Golan: Caught Between a Rock and a Hard Place’

Phil Scraton, QUB Law / Institute of Criminology and Criminal Justice. ‘Punishing Women, Breaking Spirits: Hearing the Voices of the Incarcerated’

Kellie Turtle, Belfast Feminist Network. ‘Rise Up Women!’: The Suffragette Spirit 100 years on



Hector Aristizábal

Hector Aristizábal (Medellin, Colombia) was born into poverty before becoming a theater artist and psychologist, then survived civil war,  arrest and torture at the hands of the U.S.-supported military. In 1989, violence and death threats forced him to leave his homeland. Since arriving in the U.S., he has won acclaim and awards as an artist, and has combined his training in psychology and the arts with lessons gained from life experience in his therapeutic work with  torture and trauma survivors, incarcerated youth, immigrant families, and people affected by HIV/AIDS. As an activist, he uses theatrical performance as part of the movement to end torture and to change U.S. policy in Latin America. He founded ImaginAction to help people tap  the transformative power of theater for community building and reconciliation, strategizing, and individual healing and liberation in programs throughout the U.S., Latin America, Europe and around the world. Through experiential workshops, theater performances and other creative events, ImaginAction invites participants to explore embodied knowledge, challenge the inevitability of violence, and use their
imaginations for a more just and joyous life for all people.


Nicola Browne

Nicola Browne is the Director (Policy) for the Participation and the Practice of Rights Project in Belfast. She has an LLB (Hons) degree in Law from the University of Dundee and an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Nottingham. Nicola worked for four years for the Centre for Capital Punishment Studies at Westminster University in London, which researches penal policy and practice in death penalty retentionist countries worldwide. She also worked as Protection Intern for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees Liaison Office in Dublin, carrying out appraisals of local asylum policy and co-ordinating family reunification procedures for individuals granted refugee status. Within the PPR Project Nicola works to put international human rights standards at the service of local communities and groups.


Daniel Holder

Daniel Holder is the Deputy Director of the Belfast-based human rights NGO CAJ. He previously worked in the policy team of the NI Human Rights Commission and for a number of migrant rights projects including heading the Animate project set up by the South Tyrone Empowerment Programme (STEP) and  Dungannon Council. Prior to this he taught in the University of Havana and worked as a translator for press and media organisations in Havana, Cuba. He has an LLM in Human Rights law from Queen’s University Belfast.


Frank Jannuzi

Frank Jannuzi is deputy executive director of Amnesty International USA and Head of its Washington, DC, office where he works to influence US government policy to respect human rights at home and around the world. Frank has decades of high-level international policy and political expertise. Before joining AIUSA staff this April, he was a policy director for the Democratic staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee where he advised the current chairman, John Kerry (tipped by many as Obama’s next US Secretary of State or Secretary of Defense), as well as the former chairman, Vice President Joseph Biden.  Frank helped guide several bi-partisan human rights bills through the Congress, including on Burma and North Korea and led bipartisan staff delegations to investigate conditions in Tibet, Burma, China and North Korea.  Frank’s experience also includes posts at the U.S. Department of State, the Council on Foreign Relations and Keio University in Japan. During his tenure at the State Department, Jannuzi was the founding editor-in-chief of Peacekeeping Perspectives, the State Department’s journal on multilateral peacekeeping and humanitarian operations.  Raised in New Delhi until he was 4, Frank began advocating for diversity in his teen years during the integration of Texas public schools. For twenty years, he has been active in grassroots movements to revitalize his his Baltimore neighbourhood. He holds a B.A. in history from Yale University and a Masters in Public Policy with a concentration in international affairs and security from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.


Chris Moore

Chris Moore is an award winning investigative journalist based in Belfast, who has written and reported extensively on clerical and institutional child abuse in Northern Ireland.  He was the reporter on the UTV current affairs programme Counterpoint which produced the ground-breaking programme Suffer Little Children in 1994, exposing the Brendan Smyth child sex abuse story. His books include Betrayal of Trust, Fr. Brendan Smyth Affair and the Catholic Church (1995) and The Kincora Scandal: Political Cover-up and Intrigue in Northern Ireland (1996).  Chris has continued to cover these and related stories ever since, including the struggle by campaigners for inquiries into abuse in Northern Ireland, on which he has reported critically for The Detail website.  He is currently a Senior Journalist at UTV, carrying out a series of Insight investigations, including the recently broadcast Murder in Mauritius programme.

 Ruth O’Reilly

Ruth O’Reilly is editor of The Detail, a news website launched in February 2011 and specialising in investigative journalism in Northern Ireland.  Ruth co-founded Below the Radar, a Belfast-based independent TV and online production company, with Trevor Birney in 2006, having won two Royal Television Society awards for current affairs programmes.  Her 22 years in journalism started in The Irish News in Belfast and encompasses newspapers, TV, radio as well as a four-year stint with the Press Association in Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.


Hannah Russell

Hannah Russell is currently undertaking a PhD at Queen’s University, Belfast entitled the ‘Right to Life and European Conflicts’. She has previously worked as a legal researcher for Al-Marsad – Arab Human Rights Centre in Golan Heights, Cambodian Centre for Human Rights, Disability Action’s Centre for Human Rights, Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission and Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counseling (Palestine). You can contact her at hrussell06@qub.ac.uk



Phil Scraton.

Phil Scraton is Professor of Criminology in the School of Law, Queen’s University and Director of the Childhood, Transition and Social Justice Initiative. He is co-author of Prisons Under Protest (Open University Press), The Violence of Incarceration (Routledge) andPunishing Women, Breaking Spirits (Palgrave MacMillan). He is co-editor of special issues of Social Justice on Deaths in Custody and Detention and on Penal Abolition, Prison Reform and the Expansion of Incarceration. He co-authored the NIHRC Reports: The Hurt Inside: The Imprisonment of Women and Girls in Northern Ireland and The Prison Within. He was a member of the Hillsborough Independent Panel (2010-2012) and primary author of Hillsborough: The Report of the Independent Panel (2012).


Kellie Turtle

Kellie Turtle is one of the founding members of Belfast Feminist Network, a grassroots activist network that intends to create space for all those who are passionate about addressing the inequality and injustice still experienced by women today. Having grown out of a series of discussions in April 2009, the Network has gone on to organise public meetings, political panels, seminars, lobbying campaigns, direct action and cultural activities. It uses social media to engage a wider audience and maintain a critical feminist conversation and currently has an active Facebook group with almost 700 members. Kellie obtained an MA in Gender and Society at QUB and has written for Women’s News, The F Word.co.uk, and edited her own blog on local feminist issues called ‘soisaystoher’.