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Successful Frontiers of Children’s Rights in the Caribbean Region Spring School

From 5 to 9 March 2018, the Child Law Department and the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies of Leiden Law School and the School of Law of the University of Curaçao Dr. Moises Da Costa Gomez hosted a Spring School on Children’s Rights in the Caribbean Region in Curaçao.

The course, which was organized in partnership with UNICEF the Netherlands and welcomed over 30 participants from the Caribbean and beyond, is the second regional edition of the Frontiers of Children’s Rights Summer School, which is held in Leiden each summer.

The Spring School, led by Prof. Ton Liefaard, UNICEF Chair in Children’s Rights at Leiden Law School, highlighted a number of pressing children’s rights issues in the region, and allowed the participants – government officials, social workers, representatives from civil society, among others – to exchange experiences, share best practices and strengthen their network in the field of children’s rights. The lectures and workshops were taught by academics from both Schools of Laws as well as regional experts with specific expertise on children’s rights in the region, including Dr Nicolas Espejo Yaksic, former Advisor to the UN Special Representative on Violence against Children and Prof. Adele Jones from the None in Three Research Centre, who led an inspirational session on the realities of violence against children in the region, and Ms. Richelda Rodriguez-Emmanuel, who provided insight in the challenges that children face in Sint Maarten in the aftermath of hurricane Irma.

Some of the other topics that were discussed in depth during this week include children’s rights challenges in the juvenile juvenile system, and the rights of children in the context of migration, on which UNICEF adviser Alejandro Morlachetti lectured.

On Friday UNICEF and the Caribbean Disaster Management Emergency Agency hosted a session on the situation of children and the role of UNICEF Latin America and the Caribbean Region, while Mr. Diego Rei, ILO Labour Specialist from Trinidad and Tobago tackled another pressing issue: children and labour in the Caribbean context. The week was concluded with the closing lecture by Honorable Justice Boodoosingh from the High Court of Trinidad and Tobago.

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