Monash University Castan Centre for Human Rights
The Monash University Castan Centre for Human Rights has released the first two episodes of its new series, Have You Got That Right?
Research shows that many people do not fully understand their rights and these short videos aim to empower people with knowledge in a quick, clear and engaging format.
The innovative project will be broken into a 10-episode series, each with a different theme. Series one blends comedy with serious academic content.
The first video, “What Are Human Rights?”, discusses basic human rights that many of us would be aware of, but asks what about the right to a healthy environment, marriage equality, or asylum? The video also discusses the limits to these rights.
The second video, “Marriage Equality”, discusses the fact that marriage equality is not yet recognised in international law. It showcases Associate Professor Paula Gerber, who argues that a right of marriage equality should exist as part of the right of non-discrimination.
Director of the Castan Centre Professor Sarah Joseph said the centre uses academic expertise to educate people—politicians and the general public—about human rights.
“As the centre has grown, we’ve become more and more creative in the ways we engage with people, hence our decision to undertake this project,” Professor Joseph said.
“These videos wouldn’t have been possible without the enormous support we’ve received from the Newman’s Own Foundation, the Victoria Law Foundation and the Nordia Foundation, who have all made significant contributions to the project. The pro bono support we’ve received from industry veterans as well as newcomers has also been imperative to the development of these videos. These videos are the result of teamwork and our human rights expertise.”
Castan Centre Manager Marius Smith said the centre had been exploring how to use technology to educate people about human rights for some time.
“We’ve been active on social media since 2009 and we use video extensively, so eventually this project seemed like an obvious next step,” Mr Smith said.
“When we started, we wanted to make something very different to the usual academic content. The videos had to be creative. They had to grab people’s attention, but they also had to answer questions simply and quickly. I hope we’ve succeeded.
“We hope that many people will get to the end of the videos and want to know more, so we’ve created a website with extra resources. There are links to great content for high school students as well as links to academic articles, case law and international treaties. Gradually we will build a library of human rights videos and resources that will be freely available for years to come for people with differing levels of knowledge about human rights law.”
By the end of this project, the aim is to have produced videos on as many internationally recognised human rights as possible. Anyone wishing to contribute to achieving that goal may review further information and consider a donation at the donors and supporters page.
Castan Centre for Human Rights Law
In pursuit of this mission, the Centre brings the work of human rights scholars, practitioners and advocates from a wide range of disciplines together in the Centre’s key activities of research, teaching, public education (lectures, seminars, conferences, speeches, media presentations, etc), applied research, advice work and consultancies.
The centre is named after Ron Castan AM QC (1939–1999), who was a passionate advocate for the recognition and protection of human rights and a distinguished member of the Victorian Bar.
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