KINGSTON, Jamaica (Wednesday, May 19, 2022) — Professor Verene A. Shepherd, Director of the Centre for Reparation Research (CRR) at The University of the West Indies, was appointed to the position of Chair of the United Nations’ Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), last month. She begun her post as Chair of the CERD on April 11, for two years.
CERD is the United Nations oldest Treaty Body, and the Committee implements the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
Professor Shepherd, whose candidacy was supported by CARICOM, is the first Jamaican and Caribbean citizen to be a member of CERD, and to serve as Chair.
She has been a member of the Committee since 2016, winning the highest number of votes, among those who competed for a seat on the CERD, twice in a row. This is the first time that the social historian and reparations advocate will serve as Chair of the committee.
The CRR Director brings her expertise in administration, history, gender studies, migration studies, reparation and human rights advocacy to the position.
Professor Shepherd also brings to the CERD, her experience as a member of the United Nations Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent (WGEPAD) from 2010-2015, then served as Chair from 2012-2014, during which time she helped to draft the Program of Activities for the UN’s International Decade for People of African Descent, from 2015-2024.