DS Turns 10!
28 December 2016 DS marks its tenth anniversary after its founding in Geneva on the same day in 2006. DS Director and Founder Scott Leckie reflects on the activities and victories of the past ten years, and what to expect from DS in the years to come.
It’s hard to believe that DS has now been active for ten busy and eventful years involving an extraordinary team of dedicated HLP experts from around the world. From developing the Peninsula Principles, spearheading efforts to obtain land for climate displaced people, IDP return designs in Timor Leste, Somalia, Colombia, Bhutan and many more, carrying on-site investigations in Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, Panama, Kiribati, Bangladesh and many other climate change hotspots, to HLP rights analysis and restitution design work in Myanmar, the publication of several books, inaugurating the world’s first law school courses on climate displacement, and scores of DS reports, producing films, building homes for climate displaced families in Chittagong, and so much more, this dramatic decade has been an exhilarating one.
On this tenth anniversary of DS, I would like to thank all of our supporters for making this journey so productive and even sometimes victorious. Special thanks first to the DS Board of Directors for making it all possible, and of course, to our many donors without whom we wouldn’t have been able to operate – thank you! Thanks, too, to the amazing group of world leading HLP experts that we have been so fortunate to work with during the past years; your dedication to the cause of repairing displacement, your willingness to work in sometimes difficult conditions and your care for strangers are all deeply appreciated.
And to displaced people everywhere – both those already displaced and the hundreds of millions that climate change will displace without the preventative action we have so vigourously sought – I can say we tried our best with our strategic approaches to resolving displacement to find ways that would either get you home to where you wanted to be, or to find new living options when return was either impossible or unwise. This work is hard and faces a never-ending series of obstacles along the way, but as long as DS is in place, we will never cease our efforts to end forced displacement, strengthen the rights of the displaced and continue to advocate for a vision that ensures that all displaced people no matter where they reside and no matter what the cause of their displacement, achieve residential justice and the guarantee of their HLP rights without delay.
Here’s to at least ten more years!
Founder and Director
28 December 2016
BAL – R.I.P.