Important But Neglected: A Proposal for Human Rights Education in Refugee and Displacement Camps
Kelsey R. Kofford
affiliation not provided to SSRN
October 2, 2012
Human rights suffer tremendously in refugee and displacement camps, located throughout the poverty-stricken Global South. While other locales therein – be they villages or towns with municipal status – may have some institution(s) in place in an attempt to promote or enforce human rights, such as law enforcement, refugee and displacement camps lack any such mechanism. One jarring consequence of this is that in camps refugees and displaced persons are left to fend for themselves. When their rights are violated, they believe they have nowhere to turn. Moreover, not knowing what their rights are in such an unstable environment only worsens the problem by perpetuating a culture of ignorance (on the part of victims) and impunity (on the part of violators).
Like many problems plaguing the Global South, this is one that is preventable. Accordingly, it calls for some sustainable solution to remedy the problem. What that solution is and how realistic its enforcement may be are both admittedly unknown, but a first step toward that solution seems apparent: in order for camp inhabitants to benefit from their human rights, they deserve to know their rights in the first place. Thus, this paper entertains the idea of promoting a program of human rights education (HRE) in refugee and displacement camps, with the goal of such a program ultimately promoting rights and access to justice in these camps.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 32
Date posted: October 2, 2012 ; Last revised: February 8, 2014