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Students present findings to U.N.
Students from the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law teamed up with a nongovernmental organization in the island nation Cape Verde to write a shadow report for the United Nations Human Rights Committee on that country’s failure to combat corporal punishment and sexual abuse of school children.
The report provided to the U.N. was authored by law students and representatives of the NGO Delta Cultura Cabo Verde, an organization which seeks to help marginalized children in Tarrafal, island of Santiago, Cape Verde.
The law school’s Program in International Human Rights Law (PIHRL), led by the program’s director, professor George Edwards, endorsed the report entitled “Cape Verde Breaches its Duty to Prevent and Combat Corporal Punishment and Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse of Tarrafal, Santiago School Children, and Thus Violates Articles 2, 7 & 24 of the International Covenant on Civil & Political Rights (ICCPR).”
Key recommendations in the report include the establishment of governmental mechanisms for the mandatory reporting and investigation of corporal punishment and sexual abuse cases and the integration of the “best interests of the child” principle in those mechanisms.
This report states that Cape Verde has breached its obligations under the ICCPR by failing to protect children from corporal punishment and sexual abuse, especially by teachers. The committee seeks to determine whether states that are party to the ICCPR appropriately implement and enforce the ICCPR.
Valpo law students assist prosecutors
Each year, professor Derrick Carter of Valparaiso University Law School takes a group of students to New Orleans to do pro bono work in the public defender’s office. This year, the office was in need of extra help after 27 staff members were terminated due to budgetary problems, leaving only 21 attorneys to handle a large caseload.
Students used their criminal procedure knowledge to work on long-term projects, organize caseloads, research and write briefs and memos, listen to jailhouse tapes, and accompany assigned attorneys to court.
While in New Orleans, students also visited the Louisiana Supreme Court, the 9th Ward, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and the Garden District. •