The United Nations in Moldova marked today with awards outstanding achievements in human rights in Moldova in 2016. Organized since 2004 each year on the occasion of International Human Rights Day, the UN Gala of Human Rights Awards highlights and awards the most valuable, innovative, effective and participatory initiatives and actions to protect and promote human rights in Moldova.
“Today, at this event, we come to greet our champions – organizations and individuals who showed courage, creativity and perseverance in advancing human rights in Moldova. Champions who inspired many and who can motivate many more”, said Dafina Gercheva, the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Moldova.
The 2016 edition included six awards for major achievements in human rights:
- LOW VISION Association, for its outstanding activity on social inclusion of persons with visual impairments on both sides of Nistru River;
- Keystone International Association in Moldova, for outstanding support in development of community services for people with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities;
- Dmitry Kuzuk, for his outstanding activity in social inclusion and combating stereotypes, prejudices and discrimination against people with disabilities;
- Canal Regional, for the series of talk-shows ‘Șanse Egale’ (Equal Opportunities) on human rights and discriminated groups in Moldova;
- Natalia Vozian, for her brave and innovative initiative DARE2Change, the first leadership program for people with disabilities in Moldova;
- Legal Resources Center of Moldova for substantial contribution in justice reforms, and improvement of domestic legislation on public funding of non-governmental organizations (‘Law 2%’).
The award winners were selected following an open competition in which 24 applications were submitted. Nominations were subsequently examined by a technical committee, which includes development partners and representatives of civil society, including the Gagauz ATU and Transnistria.
The criteria used in evaluation included creativity, perseverance, dedication and courage proven in promoting human rights and impact of these actions on human lives. At the next stage, a Board of 6 representatives of the UN, human rights institutions and development partners approved the awards.
2016 brought a number of significant events in the field of human rights in the Republic of Moldova. This year, Moldova was visited by the Assistant of the UN Secretary General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic and the UN Special Rapporteur on Minorities Rita Izsák-Ndiaye, and was examined by the UN Committee for Human Rights in terms of respect of civil and political rights.
Additionally, the respect for human rights in Moldova was evaluated by the UN Human Rights Council under the Universal Periodic Review mechanism. The Republic of Moldova received a large number of recommendations for improvement and 2017 will be a decisive year for ensuring their implementation.
Source: UN Moldova