Human Rights Awards: 2014 nominees announced

Posted by Ian McDonald on 24 November 2014

Liberty Human Rights Awards 2014

The nominees for the Liberty Human Rights Awards, announced today, include fearless young campaigners, lawyers, organisations and artists who have been at the forefront of the fight for our freedoms and rights in 2014.

The awards honour individuals and organisations dedicated to protecting and promoting the freedoms and rights of ordinary people, celebrating their dedication and giving voice to stories that may otherwise go unheard.

As part of our 80th birthday celebrations, we are opening the Human Rights Awards to the public for the very first time – please join us for a celebration of those working on the frontline of human rights.

The 2014 Liberty Human Rights Awards shortlist:

The Christine Jackson Young Person Award

  • Meltem Avcil – For working alongside Women for Refugee Women to end the detention of women seeking asylum, garnering more than 50,000 signatures on her petition.
  • Fahma Mohamed – For campaigning to raise awareness of the risks of female genital mutilation, gathering more than 230,000 signatures on her petition and placing responsibility for tackling FGM firmly with those in power.
  • Chrisann Jarrett – For founding Let Us Learn, calling for a change in the law which prevents young people lawfully resident in the UK from being able to take up hard-won university places because of financial barriers.

Human Rights ‘Close to Home’ Award

  • Prisoners’ Advice Service – For providing advice and information to prisoners at a time when many are left without access to legal advice because of the removal of legal aid.
  • Refuge – For fighting to bring about meaningful institutional changes which could save the lives of thousands of women and children.
  • The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace – For making a profound and lasting contribution to both our national security and our wellbeing.

Human Rights Arts Award

  • Heart n Soul’s The Beautiful Octopus ClubFor championing the talents and power of people with learning disabilities.
  • CITIZENFOUR, Laura Poitras – For highlighting the breath-taking scale of US and UK global surveillance in her documentary, which tells the story of Edward Snowden’s disclosures.
  • Warsan Shire – The first Young Poet Laureate for London and winner of the 2013 Brunel prize African poetry, who writes about FGM and violence against women.
  • Gillian Wearing, A Real Birmingham Family – The Turner Prize-winning artist who immortalised two sisters and their sons in bronze outside the Library of Birmingham.

Human Rights Lawyer of the Year

  • Rosa Curling, Leigh Day – Having acted in many legal challenges against UK national bodies, Rosa Curling is currently representing more than 80 individuals and families in the first independent inquiry into the NHS Foundation Trust scandal at Stafford Hospital.
  • John Halford, Bindmans LLP – For a long record of success in cutting-edge Judicial Review cases on behalf of individuals, charities and companies, including representing the Public Law Project in its successful challenge to the Government’s residence test for legal aid.
  • Harriet Wistrich, Birnberg Peirce and Partners – Currently acting for several women bringing claims against the Metropolitan Police over the conduct of undercover officers, Harriet Wistrich this year won a ground-breaking victory in the John Worboys case.

Human Rights Campaign of the Year Award

  • Lord Low of Dalston – For leading the campaign to ensure the protections of the Human Rights Act would apply to all residential care provided or arranged by local authorities
  • medConfidential – For fighting for confidentiality in health and social care, in reponse to the threat posed by radical changes to the way NHS England collects and passes on our patient health information via the new care data scheme.
  • Police Spies Out of Lives – For supporting the legal action taken by eight women who argue their human rights were breached when they were deceived into long-term relationships with covert officers.