Media Contact: Elizabeth Beresford,
ACTRESS MAMIE GUMMER NAMED
WOMEN’S REFUGEE COMMISSION AMBASSADOR
Co-star of new ABC series "Off the Map" to represent organization
that protects women and children refugees
For Immediate Release
New York City, May 18, 2010—Executive director Carolyn Makinson announced today that award-winning actress Mamie Gummer has agreed to serve as Ambassador for the Women’s Refugee Commission, an organization that works to improve the lives of women, children and adolescent refugees and asylum-seekers.
Women’s Refugee Commission urges these children be provided protection in Haiti while reunification efforts are made
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano appointed Dr. Dora Schriro,* one of the country's foremost experts in correctional policies, to review the detention and deportation system. Dr. Schriro was tasked with providing recommendations and met with the Women's Refugee Commission's Detention and Asylum Program several times seeking out such advice.
Women, Peace and Security: United Nations Works to Protect Women and Girls
The United Nations Security Council has taken another step forward in global efforts to end violence perpetrated against women and children in conflict. The Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution September 30, 2009 urging member states to take effective steps to halt the use of sexual violence as a tactic of war. Resolution 1888, sponsored by the United States, which holds the presidency of the Security Council this month, calls for a Special Representative to the Secretary General, who is charged with driving and coordinating the UN’s efforts to address sexual violence in conflict, efforts which have been sorely lacking. The Security Council must now ensure this leader has a strong mandate to deal substantively with women, peace and security issues, thus ensuring the effectiveness of the position. This resolution builds upon two previous resolutions on Women, Peace and Security: 1325 and 1820.
Beverlee joined the board of the Women's Refugee Commission in 1991 and was chair from 1995 to 1999. She participated in many organizational delegations to assess the needs of refugee and displaced women and children and led the Women's Commission delegation to the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, China in 1995. Beverlee was a social anthropologist, development specialist and educator. She had served as the Program Director at the Social Science Research Council and earlier, as U.S. Peace Corps Director and as Chief Technical Advisor for the United Nations Self-Help Village Development Project in Liberia.
A memorial service for Mary Anne will be held Friday February 26 at 6:00 p.m., Madison Avenue Presbyterian at 73rd Street and Madison Avenue, New York City.
It is with deepest sadness that the Women's Refugee Commission announces the passing of its dear colleague Mary Anne Schwalbe, who died September 14th.
Mary Anne was the founding director of what was until this year called the Women's Commission, leading the organization from 1990 to 1994. She was an eloquent, devoted and tireless advocate for women, children and adolescents affected by war and persecution. She had visited refugees in settings around the globe, including in Afghanistan, Liberia, Sudan and Thailand, touching the lives of all she met.
The Women's Refugee Commission is saddened to learn of the death of Senator Edward Kennedy.
“Over the course of his career, Senator Kennedy was a steadfast champion for the rights of the world’s least fortunate, including refugees from Vietnam to Iraq and asylum-seekers making a new life in the U.S.,” said Carolyn Makinson, executive director of the Women's Refugee Commission.
The Women's Refugee Commission is one of the organizations recommended by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn in their new book, "Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide," published in September 2009 by Alfred A. Knopf. We are also listed on the online New York Times Magazine on August 14, 2009 as an organization that supports women in the developing world.
The Women’s Refugee Commission congratulates Mary Robinson on receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom at a White House ceremony on August 12, 2009. As an organization dedicated to the protection of women and children displaced by conflict, the Women’s Refugee Commission deeply appreciates Mary’s unwavering support for the right of every person to live in freedom and dignity. She is a champion for the most vulnerable and an indefatigable advocate for women’s rights. We are proud to join Mary’s many friends and colleagues around the world in congratulating her on this much deserved honor.
Women’s Refugee Commission Still Concerned about Continued Detention of Families at Berks Facility
The Women’s Refugee Commission is thrilled to learn that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will stop detaining families at the T. Don Hutto Residential Center in Taylor, Texas as part of newly emerging plans for significant changes to U.S. immigration detention policy. This announcement, coupled with the administration’s ongoing review of the detention system and emerging understanding that the current criminal model of immigration detention is inappropriate for civil detainees, is an encouraging first step away from the punitive methods of immigration detention that underwent a significant expansion over the last five years.
WASHINGTON, D.C. —The Women’s Refugee Commission welcomes the introduction of the “Humane Enforcement and Legal Protections for Separated Children Act” (HELP for Separated Children Act), which will reduce the number of children who are separated from their parents as a result of immigration enforcement actions. The bill, introduced by Representative Lynn C. Woolsey (D-CA), includes critical safeguards to help preserve the family unit and reduce the strain immigration enforcement is placing on our foster care system and U.S. citizen children.
Features firsthand accounts from former immigration detainee and former U.S. immigration detention center health care worker
(Excerpt) We commend UNHCR on the leadership the organization has demonstrated in protecting and empowering refugee and IDP women and girls. We believe that the same leadership will increasingly be demonstrated in protecting the rights of stateless women and girls as well.
Briefing to Congress Details Inadequate Medical Care in Detention, Separation from Family
Washington, D.C. – The U.S. government should reform immigration enforcement policies that inflict needless suffering on immigrant women and their families, a former immigration detention center nurse, a former detainee, and a group of leading human rights advocacy and research groups said today at a Capitol Hill briefing.
Becomes "Women's Refugee Commission" This Week
(New York, NY) -- The Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children announces this week a change that conveys its mission of bringing positive change to the lives of refugees and reflects the momentum of its groundbreaking work. The Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children will now be known as Women's Refugee Commission, with a powerful new logo.
(New York, NY) -- Creation of opportunities is crucial to avoid return to conflict. The Women's Refugee Commission supports a coalition of Sierra Leonean youth groups in its call for a National Youth Commission that will offer opportunities for the young people of Sierra Leone to help rebuild their conflict-affected country, seven years after its devastating civil war.
Global Initiative Puts Fuel on Par with Food and Water as Urgent Needs in Humanitarian Assistance
(New York, NY) -- Top United Nations officials, joined by the Women's Refugee Commission, will tomorrow announce an important policy development that will compel humanitarian agencies worldwide to treat refugees' and internally displaced persons' (IDPs) access to cooking fuel with the same level of urgency as food and water.
Without Work, Average 17 Years as Refugees Means 17 Years of Dependency and Despair
(New York, NY) -- As large-scale refugee crises in Pakistan and Sri Lanka continue to make headlines, the Women's Refugee Commission today urged the humanitarian community to end dependency-inducing programs and focus as early as possible on helping crisis-affected populations – who spend an average of 17 years displaced – to resume their lives and their livelihoods.
The Women's Refugee Commission announced today that it will donate its historical archives, which document its 20-year role as an influential voice for improving the lives of refugee women, children and young people, to the Archive for Human Rights at Duke University Libraries in Durham, North Carolina.
(Washington, D.C.)—Conditions of care for unaccompanied immigrant children in the custody of the U.S. government have markedly improved over the last six years, but more must be done to protect the safety and basic rights of these vulnerable children, cautions the Women's Refugee Commission in its new report, Halfway Home: Unaccompanied Children in Immigration Custody.
Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children leads international push for solutions
New York, NY - Humanitarians from around the world gathered in India last week for the first-ever international conference dedicated to the search for fuels and energy technologies that can be used as alternatives to firewood, such as clean-burning fuels, fuel-efficient stoves and solar cookers.
New York, NYDr. Carolyn Makinson, Executive Director of leading research organization on women and children in conflict-ridden areas, The Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children, is available for comment on the use of force by the military junta in Burma (Myanmar) on unarmed civilians, and the risks faced by women, children and young people who may be forced to flee. A demographer by training, Dr. Makinson was formerly executive director of MIT’s Center for International Studies and a program officer for Population and Forced Migration at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
"The Hutto facility in particular is still very much of a prison setting," said Michelle Brané of the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children, a national advocacy group. "It's a former prison, and it still looks like a prison. We don't believe that a prisonlike facility is appropriate for housing families."
Michelle Brané quoted.
New York, NYJoan Timoney, currently Vice President for Programs of the Partnership for Public Service, has been hired as director of advocacy and external relations at the Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children. She will be based in the Women’s Commission’s Washington, D.C., office and will start December 19.
Ms. Timoney has been vice president for programs at the Partnership for Public Service since 2001, when she helped launch the nonprofit organization which works to revitalize the federal civil service and inspire a new generation to serve.
Ms. Timoney began her career in 1976 in the office of then-House Majority Whip John Brademas of Indiana. Two years later, she left Washington to serve as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Senegal, West Africa. Upon her return in 1981, she worked as a legislative assistant to the late Senator Quentin Burdick of North Dakota and as a Special Assistant to Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND).
In 1993, Ms. Timoney was appointed the Director of Congressional Relations at the Peace Corps. She later served as the first director of the Agency’s Crisis Corps program and as its Chief of Staff.
Ms. Timoney is a graduate of The George Washington University and Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
New York, NYThe Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children applauds the Department of Justice’s decision to move the hearings of unaccompanied alien children in Miami to a more child-friendly venue.
New York, NYThe Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children announced today that Carolyn Makinson has been selected as the organization’s new executive director. Makinson, who is currently director of MIT’s Center for International Studies, will assume her position in September.