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The pros and cons of Australia’s bid for UN Human Rights Council membership


Phil Lynch and Lucy McKernan in conversation with Emily Howie

How is Australia’s candidacy for a seat at the world’s peak human rights body being perceived in Geneva the home of the UN? What are Australia’s chances? How does its human rights record measure up against the competition? How best could Australian human rights advocates utilise an Australian seat on the Council?

Join us for a conversation about these topics and more at a lunch time event hosted by Allens Linklaters.

Video is available here: 

An audio recording of this conversation is now available: 

Date: Tuesday 11 April 2017

Phil Lynch has been the Director of the International Service for Human Rights in Geneva for the last four years. ISHR works to support human rights defenders at risk and to strengthen laws, policies and mechanisms for their protection. Previously Phil was the Executive Director of the Human Rights Law Centre in Australia. He started his legal career with Allens.

Lucy McKernan is a human rights lawyer and advocate for the human rights of people living in poverty and is the Geneva Representative of the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Lucy is responsible for the organisation’s advocacy before the Human Rights Council and the Treaty Bodies, and Missions to the UN. She was formerly a Senior Associate at Allens.


Emily Howie is the Director of Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre. Emily has works to protects human rights in Australian foreign policy and defend democratic freedoms. She has substantial human rights litigation experience, including as a lead lawyer in the landmark Roach v Cth case which established constitutional protection of the right to vote. Emily has a masters in law from Columbia University in New York and was formerly a Senior Associate at Allens.

Big thanks to Allens for generously hosting this event and providing light refreshments.

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