Past Events

Third Human Rights Roundtable focused on the situation of Russian-speaking young people

The third roundtable of organisations active in the human rights field took place on Friday, 31 August at the Institute of Human Rights. The main topic of the meeting was the human rights situation of Russian-speaking young people, including the level of Estonian language instruction at Russian schools and the involvement of youth living in Narva in the resolution of social and political issues.

In addition to the main topic, the discussions included the concept for a Cohabitation Act and the criminalisation of hate crimes.

Kristiina Kallas, board member of the Institute of Baltic Studies, introduced the survey carried out in the spring of 2012 among the upper secondary school students in Narva, regarding the young people’s awareness of their fundamental rights and the level of their social and political activity. Mart Rannut, a member of the Institute of Human Rights, spoke about the problems related to the level of Estonian language instruction in Russian-language schools, and more broadly, the connection between proficiency in the official language and the guarantee of human rights. After the discussion, it was decided to forward proposals for a new integration plan initiated by the Ministry of Culture.

The participants in the roundtable presented their initial vision for the concept of a draft Cohabitation Act and amendments to the Penal Code related to hate crimes initiated by the Ministry of Justice. Agreement was reached to organise separate meetings to discuss these topics in depth.

Thirteen organisations from the human rights sector participated in the roundtable.
The next roundtable will occur in November at the Human Rights Centre.

Summary of the Meeting

 Second Human Rights Roundtable took place

On 18 May 2012, a second roundtable for NGOs dealing with human rights issues occurred at the OMA Centre, with the participation of representatives from the Estonian Human Rights Centre and the Institute of Human Rights, as well as the Open Estonia Foundation, Open Republic, Estonian Patient Advocacy Association, and the ENUT.

This time, the topic under discussion was human rights reporting in the media – how to more effectively delivery messages and coordinate communications. Kari Käsper provided an overview of the 5th annual meeting of the Fundamental Rights Platform of the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency, and each organisation provided a short introduction about its current and future activities.

Summary of the Meeting

First Human Rights Roundtable took place

On 16 February 2012, the first roundtable for organisations dealing with human rights issues took place at the initiative of the Institute of Human Rights and the Estonian Human Rights Centre with the goal of increasing cooperation in the human rights sphere.

The roundtable was also attended by Gendy, the non-profit Estonian Gay Youth, the Estonian Centre for Women’s Studies and Resources, the Fenno-Ugria Association, Union of Estonian Peoples and the Child Protection League. All the organisations provided a short summary of their current activities and future plans.

Since this was the first roundtable of its kind, the main emphasis was on mapping the current situation and taking a cursory look at the future – for instance, what are the organisations’ training needs and what are the possible fields for future cooperation. The topics discussed included a harmonised form for consultations related to human rights, which could help to keep better statistics and provide better information on the greatest points of concern.

Summary of the Meeting