Tag Archives: international law

Visiting the IFLS this week: Genevieve R. Painter

Pricture of Genevieve PainterGenevieve R. Painter is a doctoral candidate in Jurisprudence and Social Policy at the University of California, Berkeley.  She is here this week only, to pursue some archival research and talk with members of the IFLS, Osgoode and York communities about mutual research interests.
Drawing on archival research, interviews, and participant observation, her doctoral project investigates the indigenous-settler colonial relationship, gender equality, and the meanings of sovereignty and self-governance in domestic and international law. She has worked as an advocate, manager, and researcher for several human rights organizations, including Human Rights Watch, WOMANKIND Worldwide, and the Trust Fund for Victims of the International Criminal Court. Genevieve is a graduate of the Faculty of Law at McGill University and a member of the Quebec Bar.
You can find Genevieve’s article, “Thinking Past Rights: Towards Feminist Theories of Reparations” (2012). 30 Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice open access here.

 

The notion of reparations encompasses debates about the relationship between individual and society, the nature of political community, the meaning of justice, and the impact of rights on social change. In international law, the dominant approach to reparations is based on individual rights. This normative framework is out of step with the understanding of reparations circulating among many women activists. I develop a theoretical approach to justice and reparations that helps to explain the gap between the international normative framework and activist discourses. Based on distributive, communitarian, and critical theories of justice, I argue that reparations can be thought of as rights, symbols, or processes. Understanding reparations as either rights or symbols is rife with problems when approached from an activist and feminist theoretical standpoint. As decisions about reparations programs are and should be determined by the political, social, economic, and cultural context, a blueprint for ‘a feminist reparations program’ is impractical and ill-advised. However, the strongest feminist approach to reparations would depart from an understanding of reparations as a process.
If you would like to pay us a visit, please follow the general Osgoode requirements for visitors (see Osgoode Research website) and indicate an interest in the IFLS on your application. If you want to discuss possibilities, send an email to Sonia Lawrence, the IFLS director s lawrence at Osgoode dot yorku dot ca

 

ICJ publication: Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Justice- A Comparative Law Casebook

Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Justice- A Comparative Law Casebook. (yes, this link takes you to the whole book, available for download).

This is pretty marvelous — many chapters each collecting case summaries on a particular topic from around the work.

From the Forward by The Hon. Michael Kirby AC CMG:

This is a remarkable book. It tells an extraordinary tale. It collects more than 100 court decisions of comparatively recent years in which judges of many lands have had to grapple with decisions about the legal rights of members of sexual minorities (homosexuals, bisexuals, transsexuals, intersex and other ‘queer’ people).
The collection is remarkable, in that it shows the extraordinary progress that has been made in a couple of decades, when measured against the hostility and inequality that marked this topic of the law over hundreds of years previously. The hostility and inequality are by no means over. The cases recorded in this book come from diverse countries. But most of them are from the courts of developed nations. In many countries of Africa, the Caribbean and Asia, inequality and injustice continue to prevail with legal backing and societal support. Still, the very publication of this book, with its clear message of parliamentary and judicial progress in the cause of equality and basic rights, will itself contribute to the global process that is underway. Judges and lawyers will read the book. They will take heart and courage to press forward in their own lands until the last remnants of ignorance and prejudice are finally removed from the face of the law

From the Introduction:

In 2009 the International Commission of Jurists began to gather together national court decisions that addressed questions concerning sexual orientation and gender identity. It did so because it had become evident that battles over some of the most controversial issues of the day were being waged in domestic courts. A very small number of cases can be brought before international human rights bodies – such as the regional human rights commissions and courts and UN treaty bodies – but increasingly international human rights arguments were being heard at the domestic level. What you have before you is the result of this research.

The fourteen chapters are organised by topic. Each chapter begins with a general introduction to that particular field of law, followed by case summaries. The latter set forth the legal issue and the relevant domestic, comparative and international law, and then summarise the arguments, reasoning, and result. Cases that are summarised in the Casebook are bold-faced throughout the text. Altogether, the Casebook consists of 108 cases, from 41 countries across a variety of regions, covering a span of more than forty years. The vast majority of decisions, nevertheless, date from the past decade. The pace of change is clearly accelerating.

Another H/T to the amazing list serv from the Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Programme at U of T: REPROHEALTHLAW-L

Guide to CEDAW (Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women) Optional Protocol

The Australian Human Rights Commission has posted Mechanisms for advancing women’s human rights: A guide to using the Optional Protocol to CEDAW and other international complaint mechanisms.

This is a practical guide for lawyers, advocates and women experiencing violations of their rights on how to use the Optional Protocol to CEDAW and other international complaint mechanisms to seek redress for alleged violations of women’s human rightscover

 

The guide provides lawyers, advocates and women experiencing violations of their rights with an introduction and a practical guide on how to use the Optional Protocol to CEDAW and other alternative protective mechanisms at the international level. This guide is an important educative tool for progressing gender equality in Australia.

 

Final hat tip this month, promise, to the amazing list serv from the Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Programme at U of T: REPROHEALTHLAW-L

Decent Work for Domestic Workers Vol 23:1 Canadian Journal of Women and the Law – now online

Guest editor Prof. Adelle Blackett of McGill introduces the volume, writing:

Feminist engagement with these intersections of class, race, nationality, and
gender through research and activism over the rights of domestic workers has
been significant. Scholars and activists have insisted upon the role of the state,
both in constructing domestic workers’ oppression and in perpetuating it through the absence of state law.  They have also challenged state paternalism in the construction of “vulnerability” that needs to be regulated.

Yet the literature on labour regulatory strategies to assist in the transformation of the domestic work relationship is only recently starting to emerge, in large measure because of a long-awaited initiative to develop an international labour standard on “decent work for domestic workers.”(link to source – references omitted)

The volume covers the globe in two ways, with articles looking at Sweden, Ghana, and other jurisdictions, but also through articles like Judy Fudge’s (UVic)  exploration of “global care chains” and the challenges that jurisdictional issues pose to regulation to make this critically important work also “decent” work. All this plus book reviews too!  Here’s a full description of the articles in this volume, accessible to all.  The other links in this post are to the U of T press site – Hein Online doesn’t yet have this volume up.  My institution (York University) has a subscription to the U of T press Journals, granting me access. Otherwise, it should be going up on Hein very soon.

Feminist Perspectives: Re-Assessing the Power Dynamics of International Law” : Call for Papers [via Society of Legal Scholars]

Feminist Perspectives: Re-Assessing the Power Dynamics of International Law” : Call for Papers

The Feminist Perspectives: Re-Assessing the Power Dynamics of International Law” has issued a call for papers. Papers must be submitted by Monday February 28 2011. Continue reading Feminist Perspectives: Re-Assessing the Power Dynamics of International Law” : Call for Papers [via Society of Legal Scholars]