26 Mar 2016

Diversity as a Platform for Human Rights

Inge Christanti, researcher at the Human Rights Study Centre, Surabaya University, East Java, realizes that her line of work is not a common choice. “Despite the difficulties often associated with human rights studies, the multidisciplinary aspect of the field appealed to me,” Inge said.

“I also believe that human society plays a crucial role in determining the direction of the community and world at large – I want to study and observe key aspects of the human society,” Inge added.

An Indonesian of Chinese descent, Inge grew up among Indonesians of Javanese descent. “I came to see that many stereotyping among various ethnicities stem from misunderstandings and misconceptions,” Inge reminisced. “This further pushed my resolve to study humanity from a human rights perspective.”

Inge went on to apply for and was granted an Australian Development Scholarship to pursue a Master’s in Human Rights Practice at Curtin University of Technology in 2005.

“Interacting with colleagues from such a diverse cultural background has broadened my horizon. It is an experience that was certainly relevant to Indonesia, considering the rich diversity Indonesia encompasses,” Inge opined.

As researcher at the Human Rights Study Centre, Surabaya University, Inge has the responsibility to observe and identify phenomena that occur in society. These observation serve as platform for Inge to conduct activities – seminars, discussions, trainings, campaigns, research – to find the root of cause, to make recommendations if it pertains to the Government of Indonesia, or even find solutions if it so presents itself.

Inge is also in charge of the periodic Jurnal Dinamika HAM (Human Rights Dinamics Journal) published by the University of Surabaya. Consequently, Inge stays abreast on all developments that concern human rights, be it on the national or international level.

Most recently, as the team of researchers at the Human Rights Study Centre observed raising concerns on human trafficking, Inge along with other researchers drafted the “Training on Human Rights with Gender Perspective to Combat Trafficking on Women and Children” program. The training was geared toward pertinent government officials such as those in the department of education, workforce, social work, as well as non-profit organisations and Indonesian former overseas workers and disseminated understanding of ‘trafficking’ and Law number 21 year 2007 on human trafficking crime.

Inge is also an active member of Green Peace Indonesia since 2009.

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