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Commonwealth meeting comes up empty-handed on human rights


Commonwealth meeting comes up empty-handed on human rights

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird claimed Canada's was the loudest voice at the Perth meeting. IMAGE 1 OF 1
No agreement reached on decriminalizing homosexuality
Despite Canadian government claims that progress was achieved, the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Perth, Australia, was unable to bring about an agreement to decriminalize homosexuality or create a human-rights monitor.
The meeting of the heads of state of 54 Commonwealth countries, held between Oct 28 and 30, was mostly notable in its failure to make progress on human rights issues.
Leaders rejected most recommendations put forward by the Eminent Persons Group (EPG), which was launched at the 2009 Commonwealth meeting to help enable the body to better cooperate on human rights issues, including the decriminalization of homosexuality.
Commonwealth heads of state have also been criticized for refusing to publish the EPG report and its recommendations.
However, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird declared on Oct 31 that progress had been made.
“Canada was the loudest voice on this issue in Perth,” Baird told the House of Commons. “We spoke out strongly against it. It is very clear, regrettably, that we will not see immediate changes in this regard, but it will be important that we continue to push for human rights, whether it is for gays and lesbians, whether it is for religious freedom, whether it is for women, whether it is for other persecuted minorities.”
Meanwhile, British Prime Minister David Cameron has said the UK may pull aid from those countries that continue to ban homosexuality.
“I guess we’ve become the biggest failure if we raised the loudest voice and got nothing,” says Randall Garrison, NDP critic for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and transsexual issues. “I don’t see any progress at all, and I don’t see any plan for what Canada’s going to do about this in the future.”
Liberal interim leader Bob Rae demanded that the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group Report be made public, saying it would be unconscionable if any part is withheld.
“All of us are very troubled by the fact that we don’t seem to be able to get even the most basic agreement about human rights in the Commonwealth,” Rae says. “You begin to wonder, beyond an interesting social club, what is it? If it’s not a group that can agree on the meaning of democracy and the meaning of human rights, clearly you’ve got a major problem.
“At the very least, we need to see the document and be part of the full discussion,” Rae says. “You can’t have these discussions behind closed doors – it needs to be debated publicly in every country.”
Garrison, however, says the report’s contents have already been thoroughly leaked, so he won’t make a formal call for its release.
Instead, Garrison plans to speak personally with Baird about what was accomplished.
“We’ll be offering some suggestions, and we’ll probably be doing those publicly very soon,” Garrison says.
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D.B Mason
Human Rights especially Gay male human rights in calgary Alberta are a JOKE with people like Phillipe Rabot and D.B Mason who has basically waited months doing NOTHING BUT WAIT & DELAY for HIS DISSMISSAL and more lack of understanding and HIS lack of due diligence. He has waited months for Justice Benslers' decision to CLEAR IT UP, Which it did NOT and in fact set us back years and little does he know how the FLA got more discriminating and damaging from the DRA (domestic relations act) which had HE done his homework on the issue before the commission is still here and worse with Proven discrimination yet AHRC is limp to act or see the presumption of parentage for GENDER EQUALITY and the addition of FAMILY STATUS for well being and best interests of the child of gay male families like mine. WHAT A BUNCH OF BS....CHIEF JUSTICE DID NOTHING BUT WAIT FOR SOMEONE ELSE TO DO THE WORK. HE'll eat his words too and make the entire AHRC look like the FRACKING KANGAROO COURTS THAT THEY ARE. HE SHOULD BE FIRED ALONG WITH RABOT AND ALISON REDFORD. ALBERTA Human Rights and Canadian human rights have much to learn, what a wake up call for this CANADIAN MALE who has had his CHILD ABDUCTED Freaking ABUSED because I am a Male, a GAY MALE and not even those we expect to take up our cause are deaf to reason, caring, helping the pleas of a desperate GAY parent for years.Don't worry about it Redford, Harper, and now MASON the Chief of Commission of TRIBUnals. HOW god damn hard is this to figure out you useless humans. MAKE IT BETTER F***ing QUICKER its been 5 fraking years, wth is going on HERE!!!!You BET i'm going to get an appeal court going. Christ I can't wait to move away from REDNECK BUTTF*** CALGARY with DISCRIMINATION rampant and BULLYS in OIL AND GAS, AHRC, College of Alberta Psychologists, Law Society...USELESS ALL OF THEM. FITNESSEXECDWH on twitter and Dax Hart Facebook are suspended temporarily...HELP US FIGHT FOR GAY RIGHTS FL01-11127 #Fight4FamilyStatus
Failure to make progress ?
When PM Dave Cameron mentioned that foreign aid to homophobic members of the Commonwealth may be cut if they fail to recognize universal human rights, African nations were listening. ----- Judging by the angry reactions of countries like Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Ghana, for example, the Commonwealth summit has stirred up hornets' nest, and that's a good thing. --- The idea though is to re-distribute aid in such a way as the grass roots human rights organizations receive the money directly rather than through the intermediary of corrupt and greedy government officials. ---- Who knows, if the poor and suffering populations of Third World countries can be empowered through direct financial aid, they may merge with the Occupy Movement in their struggle for social and economic reforms. ---- Then the Commonwealth will have found its relevance in the 21st century.
We don't need it
Canada does not need the Commonwealth. I don't see why we should lend it our relatively good image.
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