2010 Nuclear Proliferation Treaty Practicum
The Practicum, the NPT and the Future
|Bobbie Paul, left, with fellow WILPF member Judi Mohling in New York. Mohling is with Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center in Boulder, CO, and planned the Hibakusha events at schools in NYC during the NPT.|
WILPF’s Practicum in Advocacy at the NPT Review, a one-week residential program that included faculty-led seminars and special activities, was modeled on WILPF's highly successful Practicum in Advocacy at the CSW. At the request of members, this Practicum was open to women of all ages and backgrounds. WILPF co-sponsored the Practicum with the Center for Women's Health and Human Rights, the Peace and Justice Studies Association and Women in International Security.
Bobbie Paul, a new WILPF member from Georgia who attended the Practicum said, “We actively pursued the peace process on one of the biggest international stages, accompanied by thousands of people from all over the world. Perhaps one of the most memorable experiences was marching for a nuclear weapons free world on Sunday May 2, with thousands of nuclear abolitionists, many of whom had traveled to NYC – even from as far as Japan.”
During the Practicum, Bobbie heard Japanese A-bomb survivors talk about their experiences first hand. “They told us, ‘We don’t hate the people who did this to us, we just hate the bomb.’ It was a sentiment we heard the Hibakusha -- Japanese A-bomb survivors – express frequently, including when they went to talk to 10th grade students at Martin Luther King High School on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. These victims had their stories translated from Japanese into English in front of hundreds of students during the first week of the NPT, holding them in rapt attention and helping them to imagine the unthinkable horrors of an A-bomb blast.”
Bobbie recently returned home to Georgia when she is continuing her important activist work. “Coming back to Georgia after this intensive 10 days of meetings, panels, marches, interviews, early morning caucuses, and late night debriefings, I’ve wrestled with how I could best impart this rich learning experience to my family and friends as well as to those I serve in my capacity as director of the Georgia Chapter of Women’s Action for New Directions,” she said. “One way I am working on sharing benefits of the WILPF Practicum is by editing four hours of video interviews shot on the streets and at U.N. meetings. Another way is by writing an op-ed for our local Atlanta Journal Constitution on the importance of following the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (which calls for a 30 percent reduction in the nuclear arsenals of the United States and Russia, but comes with an expensive price tag for the modernization of our country’s eight nuclear weapons sites; $80 billion over the next decade).
A third way I’m bringing the experience of the Practicum home is to work with WILPF to re-examine tritium - a radioactive isotope of hydrogen that has been known to have serious health implications, especially for women, and even more for pregnant women. Small reservoirs in nuclear warheads are filled with about 4 grams of tritium to increase each bomb’s boosting power. Tritium is also routinely produced and released at our 104 nuclear power reactors and other reactors producing electricity around the world.”
Practicum in Advocacy at the United Nations April 30- May 8
Application Deadline Extended to 12 PM EST, March 3, 2010
The Practicum in Advocacy at the United Nations is accepting applications for our program running concurrently with the NPT review.
This is a rare opportunity to take a hard look at the main treaty governing the nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation regime.
The Practicum offers a uniquely high interest, fast-paced opportunity for observing how the United Nations, as
an international institution, works to address issues requiring multilateral engagement and coordinated action.
Participants gain temporary delegate status, attend official and NGO sessions, and contribute to the official documentation of both official and NGO meetings.
Led by expert faculty, the Practicum also provides ample opportunity for peer-to-peer learning, intergenerational exchange,
and exploring career opportunities. This program is open to all women residing in the US who are 21 or older, including both students and faculty.
Cost is $995, which includes hotel lodging, meals, and all programming.