Sri Lanka – Public Information Campaign on the Rights of Detainees
Posted by Gaston Lacombe at August 27th, 2010
2010 Asia JusticeMakers Fellow Harshi Perera, from Sri Lanka, has recently started working on her project for International Bridges to Justice. She aims to provide legal aid directly to five women detainees at the Welikada Prison in Sri Lanka, and she also is conducting a nationwide education campaign on the rights of the detainees. She is doing this by holding community meetings in the homes of people who have received, or are presently receiving, legal aid from her organization, Janasansadaya. Usually these people have sought their help after being victims of abuse or violence at the hands of police officers, prison guards of public officials.Harshi’s goals are, first, to sensitize the public to their rights, since many people in Sri Lanka believe that violence and torture are an accepted part of the police and prison system. Second, she wants to insure that people know where to turn if they, a family member or a friend becomes a victim of police brutality or abuse by a public official. And lastly, she wants the people who come to the home of these victims to understand the difficult battle their neighbor is living through while attempting to uphold their Human Rights.