IHRC & Law Society of Ireland call for human rights standards at the heart of business and financial practice


The Irish Human Rights Commission (IHRC) and the Law Society of Ireland are today organising their 8th Annual Human Rights Conference on "Emerging Human Rights Issues". The conference will discuss a wide range of concerns including data protection, immigration & trafficking, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights as well as human rights perspectives on business and the environment.

"Human rights in Ireland are constantly changing, presenting new and complex challenges. It is an opportune time for us to develop effective mechanisms to adequately address these new and emerging issues", said Mr. John Costello, President of the Law Society of Ireland. "Recently, the adoption of the Civil Partnership Act 2010 marked a milestone in Ireland. We have also seen a growing recognition of human rights of transgender people. This conference encourages members of the legal profession to take on the challenge of protecting and enforcing human rights."

Dr Maurice Manning, President of the IHRC said "new challenges to the promotion and protection of human rights emerge as societies develop. Emerging issues often need innovative responses to ensure human rights are always protected. This conference’s exploration of the responsibility of business to promote and protect human rights in its policies and practices is particularly timely. The fall-out from the economic crisis has human rights implications locally, nationally and globally. Efforts to reform business practice and financial regulation are ongoing. Now is the time to put human rights principles and standards that promote transparency and accountability at the heart of such efforts."

Mr Éamonn Mac Aodha, Chief Executive of the IHRC said "separate developments in the fields of communications and technology being discussed today all have the potential to raise important considerations about the balance between freedom of expression and individual security and privacy. Debate and discussion at the conference on emerging human rights issues will enhance and enrich understanding, and encourage consideration as to how human rights in these areas can be promoted and protected."
Guest Speakers include:

– Professor Michael O’Flaherty, Member of the UN Human Rights Committee
– Mary White TD, Minister of State for Equality, Integration & Human Rights
– Dr Lydia Foy, Plaintiff in the ground-breaking case of Foy v. An t-Ard Chlaraitheoir
– Barbara Nolan, Director of the European Commission’s Representation in Ireland

More than 20 other speakers will highlight different aspects of the following emerging rights issues:
– Business & Human Rights
– Human Rights & the Environment
– Data Protection & Retention
– Immigration & Human Trafficking
– Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) Rights




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