Youth celebrating Pittsburgh becoming the 5th Human Rights City in the US
In 2011 Pittsburgh City Council issued a proclamation declaring Pittsburgh the 5th Human Rights City in the United States. It is time for our city to live up to its pledge to protect our citizen’s rights. On December 10th we will highlight the various human rights concerns we would like addressed by the new administration.
AFSC DC Peace & Economic Justice interns Rita (left) and Morgan speak during a meeting with Jason Spear, Legislative Associate to Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) as part of the 2013 Human Rights Summit.
Photo: Bryan Vana
With support from the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)’s donor-funded 2013 Opportunity Grant Fund, AFSC’s Peace & Economic Justice Program in Washington, D.C. organized and hosted its first annual AFSC Youth Human Rights Summit, which took place over five days in June 2013. The Summit drew ten young people (seven high school students from New Orleans, LA; St. Louis, MO; Logan, West VA; and Washington, D.C., two college students from Earlham College in Greensboro, NC, and one college student from Washington, D.C.
On April 19 AFSC’s Racial Justice Through Human Rights (RJTHR) youth group accomplished their goal when Pittsburgh was declared a Human Rights City. Youth from the Pittsburgh Young Leaders Academy joined the RJTHR youth during the presentation of the proclamation in a ceremony during City Council. Five of the RJTHR youth accepted the Proclamation and spoke about their hope and concerns for the future of Pittsburgh.
The AFSC PA, Racial Justice Through Human Rights youth group has called on the City Council to take the first step to address racial injustices in the City of Pittsburgh by issuing a proclamation declaring Pittsburgh a Human rights City. The Proclamation will be signed by City Council on April 19th.
AFSC has been partnering with the Pittsburgh Young Leaders Academy, PYLA and after the reading of the proclamation all the youth will march from the City-County building to Market Square to celebrate the proclamation.
“Racism is ignorance and it’s been going around for a long time. If we don’t so anything about it now, it will continue to be around for generations. We have to deal with it.” Quote from youth.
What is racism? What are our human rights, and how do we create an environment in which all rights are respected. These are some of the concepts the American Friends Service Committee, (AFSC) Racial Justice Through Human Rights youth group have been learning about and reflecting on.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
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