Gender Justice and Human Rights Symposium

gender justice illustration

April 21-22, 2022
University of Miami, Lakeside Village Pavilion
1280 Stanford Drive
Coral Gables, Florida 33146

Approved Florida CLE Credits:

12.5 General credits with 6.0 Bias Elimination and 12.5 Civil Trial Certification credits.


About the Symposium 

Gender-based violence (“GBV”) is globally ubiquitous and pervasive, despite decades of efforts to address it. It encompasses physical, sexual, psychological, and economic violence targeting or disproportionately impacting individuals due to their gender or prevailing gender norms. According to World Health Organization, one in three women worldwide have experienced physical and/or sexual violence at some point in their lives, and according to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, between 2008-2014, at least one transgender person was murdered every two days. GBV respects no geographic, social, or economic boundaries, although it poses especially complex challenges to marginalized populations who experience intersecting discrimination, impacting their safety and ability to access support. COVID-19 has further intensified GBV, particularly domestic violence, leading UN Women to dub it the “shadow pandemic.”

The need for deep reflection, innovative thinking, and joint strategizing with regards to ending GBV is urgent. George Floyd’s painful murder at the hands of the police has further reignited a conversation on state violence, endemic racism, and overreliance on the criminal justice system to address GBV. Advocates point to the need for more holistic responses, including greater focus on prevention, addressing structural discrimination, and greater engagement with communities.

This symposium, hosted by the University of Miami School of Law’s Human Rights Program, in collaboration with the University of Miami International and Comparative Law Review, University of Miami Inter-American Law Review, Human Rights Society, Institute for the Advanced Study of the Americas, UN Women, the George Washington University Global Women’s Institute (GWI), and the Lancet Commission on GBV and Maltreatment of Young People, focused on holistic approaches to gender-based violence. It connected local, national, regional, and global perspectives, drawing on innovative work from around the world and delved into four dimensions critical for addressing GBV, including prevention, systemic accountability, access to justice, and protection of survivors, as well as examine lessons and opportunities for practical implementation.

The symposium further celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the Human Rights Clinic at the University of Miami School of Law and concluded with a celebratory reception.

Please see the symposium background document on gender-based violence, as well as the symposium agenda and speaker bios. Please also find a web story on the symposium.

The symposium was held in-person with accommodations for remote participation.

Symposium Agenda


9:00 a.m. Welcome Remarks

Nell Jessup Newton, Interim Dean & Visiting Professor, University of Miami School of Law
Felicia Marie Knaul,Director, Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas and Professor, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami
Gloria Estefan, Singer, Actress, Songwriter, and Humanitarian
Tamar Ezer, Acting Director, Human Rights Clinic; Faculty Director, Human Rights Program; Lecturer in Law, University of Miami School of Law

9:45 a.m. Introductory Panel

Moderator: Kalliope Mingeirou, Chief, End Violence against Women (EVAW) Section, UN Women


Reem Alsalem, UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences
Daniella Levine Cava, Mayor, Miami-Dade County 
Rosie Hidalgo, Senior Advisor on Gender-Based Violence and Special Assistant to the President, White House Gender Policy Council
Tracy Robinson, Former Commissioner, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; Deputy Dean, Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies

10:30 a.m. Preventing Gender-Based Violence

Moderator: Mary Ellsberg, Director, Global Women’s Institute (GWI), The George Washington University


Karma Cottman, Executive Director, Ujima: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community
Neil Irvin, Executive Director, Men Can Stop Rape
Bertha Nayelly Loya Marin, UN Chief of Cybercrime, Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism Department, UN Office on Drugs & Crime (UNODC) 
Tina Musuya, Senior Technical Expert on Violence against Women, What Works II Programme, Social Development Direct

11:50 p.m. Coffee Break

12:05 p.m. Systemic Accountability for Gender-Based Violence

Moderator: Tamar Ezer, Acting Director, Human Rights Clinic; Faculty Director, Human Rights Program; Lecturer in Law, University of Miami School of Law


Brisa de Angulo, Founder, A Breeze of Hope in Bolivia
Joanna Evans, Legal Director, European Human Rights Advocacy Center (EHRAC), Middlesex University School of Law
Shanaaz Mathews, Director, Child Institute; Professor, University of Cape Town
Sibongile Ndashe, Executive Director, Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa (ISLA)
Pam Palmater, Professor, Chair in Indigenous Governance, Ryerson University

1:20 p.m. Lunch

2:15 p.m. Access to Justice for Gender-Based Violence: How should we define justice?

ModeratorDonna Coker, Professor of Law, University of Miami School of Law


sujatha baliga, Former Victim Advocate and Public Defender, Restorative Justice Facilitator
Kelli Dillon, Survivor, Reproductive Justice Advocate, Violence Intervention Specialist, and Founder of Back to the Basics Community Empowerment Organization in Los Angeles, California
Raluca Popa, Gender and Law Specialist, International Development Law Organization
Andrea Ritchie, Attorney, Police Misconduct, Social Justice Institute of the Barnard Center for Research on Women
Chelsea Ullman, Research Scientist, Global Women’s Institute, The George Washington University

3:20 p.m. Rethinking Protection to Mitigate Gender-Based Violence: Engaging Survivors and Offenders

Moderator: Denisse Córdova Montes, Acting Associate Director, Human Rights Clinic; Lecturer in Law; Faculty Advisor, Human Rights Program


Tara Cookson, Canada Research Chair at the University of British Columbia's School of Public Policy and Global Affairs; and Cofounder of Ladysmith
Francesco Duberli, CEO, Survivors’ Pathway Corporation
Melina Milazzo, Senior Policy Counsel, National Network to End Domestic Violence
Melissa Scaia, Director of International Training, Global Rights for Women
Deborah Weissman, Reef C. Ivey II Distinguished Professor of Law, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

4:35 p.m. Closing Remarks

Rosa Celorio, Dean for International and Comparative Legal Studies, Burnett Family Professorial Lecturer in International and Comparative Law and Policy, The George Washington University Law School

4:45 p.m. Close


9:30 a.m. Welcome Remarks

Julio Frenk, President, University of Miami

9:45 a.m. Rethinking Training for Law Enforcement

ModeratorBianca Joseph, International Association of Women Police (IAWP) Region 5 Coordinator Senior Police Officer, Member of the IAWP Board of Directors


Deborah Friedl, IAWP President
Mirko Fernandez, Project Coordinator, UN Women Consultant & Jane Townsley, Senior Police Advisor, UN Women Consultant
Novelette Grant, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Retired), Jamaica Constabulary Force/UN Women Consultant, Spotlight Initiative
David Thomas, Program Manager, International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP)
Lien Tran, Assistant Professor, DePaul University School of Design

11:00 a.m. Coffee Break

11:15 a.m. Implementing National Action Plans

Moderator: Lynn Rosenthal, President, Center for Family Safety and Healing


Caroline Bettinger-López, Senior Advisor on Gender & Equality, Office for Victims of Crime, U.S. Department of Justice
Emma Fulu, Founder and Director, Equality Institute in Australia
Daniela Ligiero, Director & CEO, Together for Girls
Mary Kathryn Nagle, Attorney, Playwright & Social Justice Advocate
Nicolette Naylor, International Program Director for Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice, Ford Foundation
Sonya Passi, Founder & CEO, FreeFrom

12:30 p.m. Lunch

1:30 p.m. A Conversation on Local Implementation of Holistic Approaches to GBV

Moderator: Alexis Piquero, Professor & Chair of Sociology, Arts & Sciences Distinguished Scholar, University of Miami 


Laura Capobianco, Senior Policy Advisor, Safe Cities and Safe Public Spaces with Women and Girls Global Flagship Initiative, UN Women
Darci Flynn, Director of GBV Strategy & Policy, Office of the Mayor, Chicago
Kathryn Nowotny, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Miami
Jason Smith, Director of the Office of Equity and Inclusion, Miami-Dade County Mayor’s Office

2:45 p.m. Policy Working Session

  • Breakout 1Local Policies to Address GBV (Lakeside Village Pavilion) 
    Moderator: Kathryn Nowotny, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Miami 
  • Breakout 2: National Policies to Address GBV (Lakeside Village Pavilion) 
    Moderator:  Michelle Kaminsky, Domestic Violence Bureau Chief, King's County District Attorney Office

  • Breakout 3: Global Policies to Address GBV (Lakeside Village Training Room, Zoom)
    Moderator: Beverly Essue, Associate Professor of Global Health, University of Toronto 

  • Breakout 4Addressing GBV in Education (Law School Student Lounge)
    Moderator: Silvia Zenteno, Senior Director of Education and Research, It’s On Us

  • Breakout 5: Drop-in Session to Experience a Virtual Reality (VR) Solution for Law Enforcement Interviewing and Investigating GBV  (Law School F109) 
    Moderators: Lien Tran, Assistant Professor, DePaul University School of Design & Brighten Jelke, Graduate Research Assistant, DePaul University School of Design 

  • Breakout 6: Using Data and Quantitative Methods to Address GBV (Room A216B, Zoom
    Moderators: Celia Davies, Director of International Programmes and Director of Ethics, Moonshot

  • Breakout 7: Human Rights Clinic Alumni Discussion (Law School A110A, Zoom
    Moderators: Gita Howard, Miami Law Human Rights Program Accountability Fellow, Human Rights First & Gabriela Valentin, Bertha Justice Legal Fellow, Earth Rights International 

4:15 p.m. Closing Remarks

Micaela Carou-Baldner, Editor-in-Chief, University of Miami International and Comparative Law Review
Alexa Garcia, Editor-in-Chief, University of Miami Inter-American Law Review
Caroline Bettinger-López, Senior Advisor on Gender & Equality, Office for Victims of Crime, U.S. Department of Justice


Reem Ali, Human Rights Clinic, University of Miami School of Law
Kayla Bokzam, Human Rights Clinic, University of Miami School of Law
Mary Miller, Human Rights Clinic, University of Miami School of Law
Renu Nargund, University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas
Megan Norris, Human Rights Clinic, University of Miami School of Law
Maxwell Zoberman, Human Rights Clinic, University of Miami School of Law

4:30 p.m. Celebratory Reception 

Celebrating the 10-Year Anniversary of Miami Law’s Human Rights Clinic

5:30 p.m. Close

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Gender Justice 2022 Sponsors by Miami Law Communications