Human rights appointment

  • Margaret Wilson

Auckland Barrister Ms Shelley Sage has been appointed as interim chair of the Human Rights Review Tribunal from 1 January 2002.

The Human Rights Review Tribunal takes over the functions previously exercised by the Complaints Review Tribunal.

Under the Human Rights Amendment Act, which comes into force on 1 January, all problems relating to both Government and non-Government human rights compliance will be dealt with by the Commission through a publicly funded problem-solving/dispute resolution process.

The Commission will endeavour to assist the parties to resolve the dispute by providing services such as information gathering and expert advice, including mediation services whenever possible.

If mediation fails or is inappropriate, the complainant may take the case to the Human Rights Review Tribunal for adjudication.

Ms Sage has a background in general litigation, specialising in family, criminal and matrimonial property law. She is a member of the Refugee Status Appeal Authority and a member of the Removal Review Authority. The Human Rights Review Tribunal position is part time.

Newspaper advertisments this week and in January will call for expressions of interest in all positions in the new human rights institutions except that of Chief Human Rights Commissioner, who was appointed last year for a 5-year term.

Appointments will be made in the new year to take effect from 1 April. The appointment to the new position of Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner will take effect on 1 July.

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