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Defenders for Human Rights
Remzi Cej

Remzi Cej Displacement to Activism

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GRADE LEVELS = 7 to 12  /  SUGGESTED TIME = Three 60 minute class periods

Remzi Cej is a human rights activist and former Kosovar refugee. He speaks publicly about his story of war and asylum in hopes of raising awareness of discrimination and empowering people to be motivated by the adversity they have faced.

Remzi was born and raised in Kosova, but was forced out into refugee life in 1999 when, during the Yugoslav Wars, the Serbian army sent the Albanians, Turks, Bosniaks, and the Roma of his town on a forced march out of the country. He lived in refugee camps in Albania for a year and a half before finding asylum in Canada.

Prior to taking up his current position as Chair of the Newfoundland and Labrador Human Rights commission, Cej was actively involved in a variety of human rights and social justice work focusing on “violence against women, human trafficking, refugees, and discrimination based on sexual orientation or religious and ethnic belonging.”

He has sat on the boards of such organizations as War Child Canada, Amnesty International Canada (English-speaking Section), as well as the Community Youth Network. He was one of the youngest recipients of the YMCA Peace Medal for Human Rights Education (2002 and 2013) and a recipient of the Terry Fox Humanitarian Award (2007).

Additionally, Cej has a long history of volunteering and working on human rights and social justice with such organizations as the Association for New Canadians, AIDS Committee of Newfoundland and Labrador, Amnesty International, Oxfam Canada, War Child Canada, International Committee of the Red Cross, and the United Nations Association in Canada.