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JUNE 2020
A national network dedicated to building a culture of human rights.

Join the HRE USA Steering Committee

Help shape the future of human rights education. Nominate yourself or a colleague to join the HRE USA Steering Committee. 

This year there are TWO open seats to be filled, and we invite all members to make nominations for their replacements. You may nominate anyone who fits the criteria for membership and can fulfill the responsibilities of Steering Committee members.

Brief biographies of current members can be viewed here. A ballot will be sent to all HRE USA members in July.

Elected Steering Committee members will serve a three-year term beginning in August 2020.

>> Learn more
>> Nomination Form



  Join the Steering Committee
  Flowers Fund Grants
  HRE Award Nominations
  New Regional Reps


  UN HRC Condemns Racism
  End Police Brutality


  Teach about Racism & Violence
  Racial Justice Videos
  Under the Blacklight Series
  Teach Structural Violence Guides
  MOOC - Protecting Human Rights
  UN Immersion Program


•  Lecturer - UC Davis


  Advancing HR in Time of Crisis
  Peoples Historians - Mini-Classes
  Solutions in a Time of Crisis
  Abolishing Structural Racism
  Climate Change Educ. Institute

Extended Deadline for Human Rights Education Awards & Grants

Do you have an idea to advance human rights education in the United States?  Need support?  Applications are now being accepted for 2020 Flowers Fund Grants of up to $1000. 


>> Learn more

Recognize an individual or an organization that has made a significant contribution to Human Rights Education by nominating them for the 2020 Edward O’Brien HRE Awards. 


>> Learn more

HRE USA Welcomes Two New Regional Representatives

HRE USA has a national network of chapters with regional representatives who volunteer to serve as contact persons for human rights educators in their region, state, or city. HRE USA is excited to welcome two new representatives for New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC.  

John Terry is a social studies teacher in New Jersey public schools, where he has participated in the NJ state chapter of HRE USA, and led efforts in school districts to integrate human rights into their current curricula and to design stand-alone courses in human rights. To this end, he has developed model lessons and resources for the HRE USA Curriculum Integration Guide and provided professional development to educators in NJ through district in-service sessions and state-wide conferences. John holds degrees and certifications from the Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences, the Rutgers Graduate School of Education, and Montclair State University, and has completed formal training in Human Rights Education through the University of San Francisco.  

Rachel Bergsieker is a passionate advocate for human rights education based in Washington, DC. Rachel formerly served as the American Friends Service Committee’s (AFSC) Human Rights Learning Associate, where she worked to expand human rights education in DC schools. Managing AFSC’s Human Rights Learning Program, she co-authored the curriculum for a DC Public School (DCPS) high school social studies elective course entitled “Human Rights and Social Action.” In its first year, the elective was offered at 3 DCPS high schools, reaching over 80 students. Rachel is excited to continue to build a culture of human rights in DC in this new role.

>> Learn more about HRE USA Regional Chapters

UN Human Rights Council Strongly Condemns US Racial Violence

The United Nations has taken an unprecedented step in advancing human rights globally by responding to a call from the Family members of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Michael Brown, and Philando Castile to take action in response to racially-motivated violence in the U.S. 

After hearing a powerful statement from George Floyd’s brother Philonise Floyd, the Human Rights Council passed a Juneteenth resolution (UN Resolution 6-19-2020, marking an unprecedented step in calling out the United States for specific human rights violations. It specified the killings of George Floyd and other Africans and people of African descent, “strongly condemning the continuing racially discriminatory and violent practices perpetrated by law enforcement agencies … and further condemn the structural racism in the criminal justice system.” The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights is to formally report to member governments on these violations as well as to “examine government responses to antiracism peaceful protests, including the alleged use of excessive force against protesters, bystanders and journalists” and make recommendations for addressing them. 

>> Read more

Take Action To End Police Brutality

The Justice in Policing Act (S. 3912/H.R. 7120) cleared the House Judiciary Committee in a party-line vote after a contentious 11-hour markup session. The NEA-supported bill would ban no-knock warrants, chokeholds like the one that killed George Floyd, racial and religious profiling, and transferring military-grade equipment to state and local law enforcement. It would also create a national database to help track police misconduct and reform qualified immunity to make it easier for individuals to recover damages when police officers violate their constitutional rights. The full House plans to vote on H.R. 7120 this Thursday.

>> Tell your members of Congress to support the Justice in Policing Act

Teaching About Race, Racism, and Police Violence

George Floyd should still be alive. Breonna Taylor should still be alive. So many should still be alive. Our nation’s historic and ongoing injustices can’t be ignored. To spur this much-needed discussion around implicit bias and systemic racism, Teaching Tolerance has put together a collection of resources that will help educators talk with students while prioritizing their well-being and agency.

>> Learn more

SIMA Classroom - Racial Justice Videos

SIMA Classroom has put together a curated selection of films aimed at confronting viewers with our history and our present reality of racial injustice—one that we need to look straight into the eyes in order to create a new era of truth and justice.

>> Learn more

African American Policy Forum - Under The Blacklight Series


Though Coronavirus did not create the stark social, financial, and political inequalities that define life for many Americans,  it has made them more strikingly visible than any moment in recent history.  Moderated by Kimberlé Crenshaw, AAPF’s “Under The Blacklight”  series seeks to interrupt the narratives, political decisions, and histories that serve as the conditions of possibility for COVID-19’s destruction.

The series began prior to George Floyd's murder, and by a week after, with demonstrations in progress nationwide, over 7,000 participants tuned in to hear from those whose professional and personal experiences informed their views intersectional vulnerabilities.

The African American Policy Forum has posted the entire 11 episode series for free online.  

>> Watch now

Confronting Structural Violence: Law Teaching Guides

Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights (CLIHHR) launched Confronting Structural Violence: Law Teaching Guides to provide open-access teaching resources for professors.

Law faculty in a range of disciplines can download and immediately use any of the 10 open-access Law Teaching Guides, which are grounded in cases many professors already teach and cover topics that are currently making headlines. The Law Teaching Guides, which cover constitutional law, international law, criminal law, corporations, and IP, are a flexible resource professors can easily adapt for introductory survey courses or upper-level seminars. Please feel free to take a look and share with any law faculty who may find the Guides useful.

>> Access Guide

Free MOOC - Promoting and Protecting Human Rights: a Global Overview

This free online course is for inter-governmental and non-governmental staff; social workers; researchers; committed citizens around the world, who are actively interested and engaged in human rights work and wish to gain a general overview of historical and current human rights developments at the international and regional level.

>> Learn more and register

The UN Immersion Programme is open for applications!

This unique training opportunity will give you direct access to the United Nations’ institutions and staff, offering opportunities for networking and providing you with insights into UN career paths.

The field visits to Geneva include activities with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and other institutions.

The program includes expert lecturers, training workshops, guided tours, and the attendance of multilateral conferences. Dedicated career development sessions will give you the opportunity to have your CV, motivation letter, and LinkedIn profile reviewed.

The training opportunity is available in two editions from 27 – 31 July 2020 and from 17 – 21 August 2020. A maximum of 30 participants are accepted. It is also possible to register for a four-week preparatory e-learning course right before the field visit. All participants will receive an official UN certificate at the end of the program.

>> Learn more

Lecturer - Human Rights Program, University of California, Davis

The Human Rights Program at the University of California, Davis would like to recruit for a Unit 18 Lecturer for the 2020-2021 academic year. Primary duties will be to teach HMR 140A (Human Rights and the Popular Imagination), HMR 138 (Human Rights, Gender and Sexuality), HMR 134 (Human Rights), and other courses as assigned and depending on the successful candidate’s training and expertise. Assignment of classes, hours of instruction, and office hours are at the discretion of the program. Classes taught are between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm, Monday-Friday. Salary is commensurate with education, qualifications, and experience. This appointment is renewable contingent on program teaching needs and funding. The successful candidate will join a growing interdisciplinary community of scholars committed to excellence in Human Rights Studies research, teaching and public engagement. 


>> Learn more and apply

Envisioning the Future: Advancing Human Rights in Time of Crisis


When: Wednesday, June 24, 2020
Time: 1-2p CT / 2-3p ET / 11a-12p PT
Where: Live Stream on Zoom

Cost: FREE

The University of Minnesota Human Rights Lab and the Center for Global Health and Social Responsibility, is providing a space for scholars, practitioners, researchers, and advocates to explore these and related questions through its virtual series, "Envisioning the Future: Advancing human rights in a time of crisis."

Featuring E. Tendayi Achiume (UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance; Professor of Law, University of California, Los Angeles), Rachel Hardeman (Professor of Health Policy and Management, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota), and Sirry Alang (Professor of Sociology and Health, Medicine, and Society, Lehigh University); moderated by Shailey Prasad (Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health; Executive Director, Center for Global Health & Social Responsibility, University of Minnesota.)

Structural inequalities between Black and White Americans have always had devastating impacts, and these disparate health outcomes have become even more apparent in the COVID-19 era. Panelists discuss the impact of structural racism on overall health outcomes of black Americans, the framing of police brutality against African-Americans as a public health crisis, how the record of systemic racial injustice in the United States relates to the country's human rights law obligations, racial and economic disparities that exist outside of the U.S., and strategies for addressing gaps on a national and international level to guarantee the right to health in a post-COVID world.

>> Learn more

People's Historians Online Mini-Classes

When: Fridays throughout June & July
Time: 11 am Pacific, 1pm Central, 2pm Eastern
Where: Live Stream
Cost: FREE

Every Friday, as part of their People's Historians Online Series, the Zinn Education Project presents a 75-minute mini-class featuring phenomenal teachers, authors, and professors from around the United States. 

Participants can look forward to learning through stories about people’s history, meeting other educators, and finding a road map forward in the midst of this pandemic. As one participant said, “Thank you for getting us together and giving me hope that we are not alone and that we can think and act ourselves out of this pandemic.”

The sessions are designed for teachers and other school staff, however, parents, students, and others are welcome to participate. ASL interpretation is provided. Upcoming sessions include: 

  • June 26: Women in the Black Freedom Struggle - Jeanne Theoharis in conversation with Jesse Hagopian    
  • July 10: Reconstruction and Issues of Citizenship, Suffrage, and Movement Building in the 19th Century - Manisha Sinha in conversation with high school teacher Adam Sanchez.

>> Learn more and register

Honoring Our Power: Community Solutions in a Time of Crisis


When: Monday, June 29, 2020
Time: 5-6 pm ET 
Where: Live Webinar

Cost: FREE

As we face interconnected crises, including the COVID pandemic, white racial violence, and police militarization, we will uplift the community solutions that build resilience in times of crisis and beyond. Join Partners for Dignity & Rights for a conversation with the evening’s honorees:

  • Crystal Hayling, Executive Director, The Libra Foundation
  • Todd Cherkis, Co-Founder, United Workers
  • Adriana Foster, Leadership Organizer, United Workers

Featuring special guests Scot Nakagawa, Co-Founder, ChangeLab and Cathy Albisa, Founding Director, Partners for Dignity & Rights, as well as poetry from Sunni Patterson (Def Poetry Jam and Ted Talks).

>> Learn more and register

Webinar - Building a Human Rights Cities Movement Against Structural Racism


When: Thursday, July 9
Time: 4:00PM-5:30PM EDT
Where: Live Stream

Cost: FREE

Black resistances to dismantle violent police repression in the crux of the pandemic in the United States have inspired a global wave of resistance to both the immediate threats from violent police repression, but to the wider systemic forces that drive racial inequities and are fueling what UN Special Rapporteur on Contemporary Forms of Racism, E. Tendayi Achiume has called “a human rights crisis of existential proportions.” The global community has become activated like never before to demand accountability and transformative changes to address long-standing injustices. This webinar will offer context and clarity to help community leaders and activists learn how global human rights law and institutions can support our movements for fundamental changes in the United States. Participants will learn more about organizing work to hold local and national authorities accountable to global human rights, and how this can empower communities seeking dignity and justice for all people, organizations and local governments on activating global human rights mechanisms to usher in fundamental changes within the U.S. and globally.

>> Learn more

Stay-In-Stitute for Climate Change Education

When: July 22-24, 2020
Where: Virtual conference
Cost: $150 (scholarships available)
Credits: 20 hours of Continuing education and 2 graduate credits available

Climate change solutions are made in the classroom, at home, and within our communities. Let’s make the most out of our current situation by reimagining what education can be and how we can build opportunities for climate change solutions together! Virtual learning experiences offer a unique opportunity to make connections across our public and at-home learning spaces that don’t exist in the traditional system.

This three-day experience will take you beyond your computer screen, and into your backyard and neighborhood to do authentic scientific and social data collection, move your body, and make observations of the world around you. On-screen time will be segmented into at most two-hours at a time, and small group online experiences will occur daily, as well as optional evening events.

>> Learn more and register

Human Rights Educators USA is a national network that strives to promote human dignity, justice, and peace by cultivating an expansive, vibrant base of support for Human Rights Education in the United States.   >> Learn more 
HRE USA is a project of the Center for Transformative Action
Copyright © 2020 Human Rights Educators USA, All rights reserved.

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