GIS – 29 July 2020: A half-day workshop on Human Rights and Law Enforcement in Mauritius, targeting some 50 Senior Police Officers and aiming at sensitising them on the principles on non-discrimination, kicked-off, this morning, at Labourdonnais Hotel in Caudan. The Chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Mr Dheerujlall Seetulsingh, and the Ambassador and Head of Delegation of the European Union (EU) to the Republic of Mauritius, Mr Vincent Degert, were present on that occasion.
In his opening remarks, Mr Seetulsingh highlighted that emphasis would be laid upon principles of non-discrimination, namely vis-à-vis the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) community and the elderly persons. He pointed out that LGBTI people are also members of society who live and work like everyone else, and as such, encouraged the police force to help eliminate any prejudice that may still exist.
The NHRC Chairman also underscored that the workshop was an opportunity to familiarise Police Officers with the role and mandate of the NHRC and to present the 2019 annual report of the Commission.
For his part, Mr Degert underlined that, through the NHRC-EU partnership, Police Officers can be sensitised on how to apply the principles of non-discrimination with various target groups, including LGBTI people and the elderly. As Police Officers are in direct contact with the population on a daily basis, it is essential that they are familiar with equality and non-discrimination, two concepts which are at the heart of modern societies based on human rights, he added.
He further reiterated EU’s commitment to eliminate all forms of discriminations, within its borders and in the world, so that every person may enjoy human rights and fundamental freedom without restrictions or exceptions.
The workshop, jointly organised by the NHRC and the EU, forms part of the project Promotion du respect des droits de l’homme à Maurice et à Rodrigues, implemented by the NHRC and financed by the EU. It is part of a series of actions implemented since March 2018 by the Commission to raise awareness among citizens, in particular women and young people, about human rights and also contribute to the fight against all forms of discrimination.
Themes addressed during the workshop were: The Mandate of the National Preventive Mechanism Division; Sexual Orientation and Human Rights; Sensitising the Police on LGBTI issues; and Law Enforcement and Elderly Persons.
The NHRC also launched two new tools to promote human rights on the occasion. They are: a silicone bracelet engraved with key human rights principles, which will be widely distributed so that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is disseminated in Mauritius and Rodrigues; and a leaflet with all important information for victims of domestic violence, giving them quick access to comprehensive information on the help they can receive.
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