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International Albinism Awareness Day 13th June 2019

12 June 2019

Improving access to justice for persons with Albinism (PWA) in South Africa

A unique intervention in South Africa has been designed to complement global-wide initiatives to secure the rights and wellbeing of persons with albinism (PWA) through a variety of innovative and compelling social justice initiatives. The outcomes expect to see reunited families, supportive communities and functioning government entities.

Spearheaded by the National Department of Justice and Constitutional Development a National Summit entitled Equal Access to Justice for Persons with Albinism will be held on the 14th and 15th November 2019 in celebration of 16 Days of Non-Violence, International Restorative Justice Week and Disability Month.

The purpose of the 2-day Summit will be to demonstrate how, through restorative and humane approaches, effective education and advocacy, there can be a marked decrease in severe forms of discrimination and violence for PWA in South Africa.  The Summit will be organised in partnership with the NGO Khulisa Social Solutions (who has mediated over 16,000 cases in the past 15 years) the interventions are aimed at gaining a greater understanding of the predicament of PWA’s, and to ascertain how effectively civil society and Government together can assist in strengthening the fight against the stigmatisation of PWAs through advocacy, public education, accountability and swift recourse to the law.  This project presents a vehicle of justice and redress for some of the most discriminatory and ill-informed practices of our times – abuses against PWA.   

The Access for Justice for PWA process is already underway in Tanzania, Zimbabwe and soon in Malawi.  The findings of the preliminary cases will be presented at the Summit in November with the evidence being released on how, through effective education on human rights and access to justice, the lives of thousands of People with Albinism and their families and communities can be truly transformed.

Preparations for the Summit coincide with the official visit of the United Nations Independent Expert on the rights of persons with albinism, Ms Ero, to South Africa from 16-26 September 2019.

For further information contact:
Lesley Ann van Selm – lesleyann@khulisa.org.za / +27 (0) 82 601 2299 / www.khulisa.org.za

Kindly note the departmental official available for interviews is:
Ms Sindiswa Ngcongco
Assistant Director: Promotion of the Rights of Vulnerable Groups
Femicide, Domestic Violence and People with Disabilities
National Department of Justice and Constitutional Development
Tel: 012 315 1788/ 084 586 3825
Email: SNgcongco@justice.gov.za