2015 Right Livelihood Awards honour courageous and effective solutions to secure human rights and respond to global crises
A Pacific island state foreign minister who has challenged the world’s nuclear powers through unprecedented legal action; an indigenous leader who fights to protect the Arctic in the face of climate change; a Ugandan human rights activist working against the discrimination of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) communities in Africa; and an Italian doctor who has saved countless lives in war-torn countries are this year’s Laureates of the Right Livelihood Award, widely known as the ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’.
The 2015 Right Livelihood Honorary Award goes to TONY DE BRUM and THE PEOPLE OF THE MARSHALL ISLANDS “in recognition of their vision and courage to take legal action against the nuclear powers for failing to honour their disarmament obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.”
Three Laureates will share the cash award of SEK 3 million (ca. EUR 320 000):
The jury recognises SHEILA WATT-CLOUTIER (Canada) “for her lifelong work to protect the Inuit of the Arctic and defend their right to maintain their livelihoods and culture, which are acutely threatened by climate change.”
The Jury awards KASHA JACQUELINE NABAGESERA (Uganda) “for her courage and persistence, despite violence and intimidation, in working for the right of LGBTI people to a life free from prejudice and persecution.”
The Jury recognises GINO STRADA, co-founder of EMERGENCY, (Italy) “for his great humanity and skill in providing outstanding medical and surgical services to the victims of conflict and injustice, while fearlessly addressing the causes of war.”
The 2015 Right Livelihood Awards were announced today in Stockholm at the Swedish Foreign Office International Press Centre by Ole von Uexkull, Executive Director, and Dr Monika Griefahn, Chair of the Board of the Right Livelihood Award Foundation.
Ole von Uexkull said, “This year’s Right Livelihood Laureates stand up for our basic rights – be it the rights of indigenous peoples or LGBTI communities, or the right of all citizens to live in a world free from the scourges of war and climate chaos. With their tireless work, on the frontlines and in courts, the Laureates uphold the values that led to the creation of the United Nations seventy years ago. In this year of global humanitarian crises, they provide an inspiring response to the defining challenges of our time.”
2015 Award Ceremony
The Awards will be presented at a ceremony in Stockholm on 30 November 2015, hosted by the Society for the Right Livelihood Award in the Swedish Parliament.
Founded in 1980, the Right Livelihood Awards are presented annually in the Swedish Parliament and are often referred to as ‘Alternative Nobel Prizes’. They were introduced “to honour and support those offering practical and exemplary answers to the most urgent challenges facing us today”. Jakob von Uexkull, a Swedish-German professional philatelist, sold his business to provide the original funding. Since then, the Awards have been financed by individual donors.
This year, there were 128 proposals from 53 countries. From today, there are 162 Right Livelihood Award Laureates from 67 countries. It is the first time that the Award goes to Laureates from Italy and Uganda.