Human Rights Projects
The Center for the Advancement of Human Rights sponsors a number of ongoing projects.
Combating Human Trafficking
CAHR has played a leading role among U.S. universities in conducting research, training, and victim advocacy aimed at combating modern slavery. CAHR’s 2004 Report Florida Responds to Human Trafficking was one of the first U.S. research projects to analyze human trafficking beginning with direct victim interviews. The Center has also engaged in creating a Strategic Plan for Florida to better coordinate statewide efforts to eliminate trafficking and to better assist victims.
Human Rights and Immigration Law
Attorneys for CAHR offer pro bono legal representation to asylum seekers, victims of torture, abused immigrant women, victims of violent crimes, and survivors of human trafficking. Under the supervision of CAHR attorneys, FSU law students conduct legal research and advocacy in these cases. CAHR has assisted human rights victims from Nigeria, Kenya, Benin, Algeria, Chad, Russia, Latvia, Syria, Iran, Cuba, Haiti, Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Burma, and the Philippines.
Restoration of Voter Rights
Florida remains one of the few states in the U.S. that permanently disenfranchises ex-felons until they have undergone an additional administrative process. Currently more than 300,000 ex-offenders in Florida have completed their sentences and are awaiting restoration of their voting rights. CAHR is engaged in a multi-year project funded by the Florida Bar Foundation to facilitate this process and engage state government in strategies to eliminate this backlog.
IBA International Law MissionsIn joint ventures with the London-based Human Rights Institute of the International Bar Association (IBA), FSU students and faculty have prepared background reports and accompanied fact-finding missions to countries where rule of law is at risk.
Law School Alternative Spring Break
Under the supervision of Program Director Wendi Adelson, FSU law students have the opportunity to spend their Spring Break week volunteering with immigrant advocacy orgainzations in South Florida. Beginning with Spring Break 2008, FSU law students performed pro bono legal service work with the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center, Catholic Charities, and the Human Rights Institute.
International Human Rights Education ConsortiumExecutive Director Terry Coonan and Distinguished Professor Sumner Twiss both serve on the International Human Rights Education Consortium, a group of educators worldwide who lead human rights programs at their respective universities. For more information on this consortium, see its website at http://www.utica.edu/academic/institutes/ihrec/