On Liberia, justice, the TRC and the Diaspora (or, Get thee to Staten Island!)

Here’s an invitation I got by email for a fascinating event on Liberia happening in New York soon.  Jerome Verdier, TRC chair, keynotes.  If anyone happens to attend I’d love to hear about it.


Presented by
African Refuge, Inc.
International Trauma Studies Program
The New School University
The Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University
Several Liberian led civil society organizations

Date: October 29-30
-Wollman Auditorium – New School University-
Manhattan – New York – Staten Island

New York– The West African nation of Liberia is recovering from 14 years of civil conflict. In 2009, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia (TRC) released a Final Report with a broad array of recommendations related to institutional reform, national recovery, and redress for victims of human rights and humanitarian violations. The TRC Report also contains recommendations related to prosecutions and amnesty for certain alleged perpetrators. More than a year later, no action has been taken to implement the TRC’s recommendations.

On October 29-30 African Refuge, Inc. (AR), in collaboration with the New School University, the International Trauma Studies Program, The Institute for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia University, and several civil society organizations, will host a two-day symposium to reinvigorate the interests of both the international community and Liberians at large in the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Report.

Leading scholars, practitioners, and other experts will engage in discussion sessions grouped into three (3) tracks focused on the themes of Reform, Redress, and Reconciliation: The Pathway to Sustainable Peace, Security, and Development in Liberia.
The two-day symposium will seek to address a multitude of pressing questions concerning the Liberian TRC, including: Why has the international and national response to the TRC Report and the implementation of the TRC recommendations been lukewarm and indifferent? What reception has the TRC Report received and what are its major strengths and weaknesses? The Chairman of the TRC Commission, Hon. Jerome Verdier, will give the keynote address.

The symposium will climax on Staten Island with a civic participation and social entrepreneurship workshop. The goal is to empower participants with the skills to effectively promote peace, democracy, and human rights at the grassroots level. Leading practitioners will present effective civic action strategies and ideal practices in grassroots fund-raising. The workshop will conclude with an indigenous Liberian art exhibit by the award-winning Liberian Peace Crusaders, a dinner reception, a silent auction, and a live cultural performance by the Liberian Peace Crusaders. Headed by the Liberian Cultural Ambassador Julie Endee, the Liberian Peace Crusaders is the premier performance and advocacy group in Liberia. The event will be held at St. Peter’s Church auditorium, located at 53 St. Mark’s Place, New Brighton, and Staten Island. Fee for the Staten Island event is $75.00. Those interested can purchase tickets online or at the door. Cash and credit cards (MasterCard, Visa, American Express) are both accepted.

For more information about AR, the symposium, or hotel accommodations, please visit us at www.africanrefuge.org, or
contact Ms. Jonatta Moore at jonatta@africanrefuge.org/(718)701-4055.

185 Park Hill Ave, Ste LB | Staten Island, NY 10304
718-701-4055 | www.africanrefuge.org | info@africanrefuge.org

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