The COMCOL’s 2018 Annual Conference was celebrated in North America for the first time. We partnered with the Federation of International Human Rights Museum (FIHRM), the City of Human Rights Education (TheCoHRE), and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR), who was also our host.
During the three days, the presentations and panels tackled a vast array of issues around the challenges of acknowledging events in the past to bring about change for the future. The cases presented examples from all over the world on meaningful collaborations between museum professionals and their various communities, from indigenous peoples to the LGBTQ+ community.
Together we explored how collections and collecting can promote human rights, equality, provoke empathy, and facilitate meaningful dialogue leveraging the soft powers of museums.
The conference started with a traditional ceremony performed by Elder Kelly to honor and recognize the land of the five indigenous inhabitants: the Anishinaabe, Mushkegowuk, Dakota, Dene, and Métis, on which the museum is situated. After which we had the opening speeches from Mayor Brian Bowman, the president of CMHR Dr. John Young, David Flemming (FIHRM) and Danielle Kuijten (COMCOL).