On 3rd October 2014 the Human Rights Centre in conjunction with the Commission for Victims and Survivors, Healing Through Remembering, the Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice (Queen’s University Belfast), and the Transitional Justice Institute (University of Ulster) held a conference ‘Remedying the Past, Healing for the Future’.
The conference aimed to encourage an informed discussion around how tangible measures could be used to improve the quality of life for victims and survivors.
The keynote speech was delivered by Antônio Augusto Cançado Trindade, a Brazilian judge at the International Court of Justice, former President and judge of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, and a professor of international law. A panel in the morning brought together local practitioners to highlight issues affecting victims and survivors and to discuss appropriate remedies for dealing with the past. An afternoon workshop enabled conference participants to discuss the potential benefits and limitations of material and symbolic reparations; the kind of remedies that could be appropriate for Northern Ireland and the potential role for apologies and acknowledgement. This discussion informed a panel session after lunch, where conference attendees engaged in a conversation with academics on the experiences of remedies in other locations and their applicability to Northern Ireland.
The full report of the conference can be found here.
The public sessions of the conference were video recorded and can be viewed here.