Ore Dock concert to support human rights organization


Zoe Maki

From the death penalty to gender, sexuality and identity, Amnesty International addresses a wide range issues, especially migrant and refugee rights. As one of the world’s largest grassroots human rights organizations, Amnesty International has helped free hundreds “who were wrongfully imprisoned because of who they are and what they believe” and changed laws in many countries, according to its website.

The organization has thousands of groups around the world, and as of this semester, Marquette has its own chapter that has been focusing on a campaign regarding refugee and migrant rights. In order to bring attention to the campaign, the group is hosting “Be Apart of the Story: Amnesty International Support Concert,” which will include live bands, a silent auction art gallery, poetry readings and personal stories at the Ore Dock Brewing Co. from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. tonight, Dec. 7.

“Our goal this semester was to get people to connect with refugees and […] actually be able to connect to those that are different than them,” said sophomore social work major Abi Austin, co-founder of Amnesty International Marquette.

The art gallery will be split in half with two distinct sides separated by a table filled with information on how community members can get involved. One side will be well lit and filled with artwork that represents hope and freedom; the other side will be darker and filled with art work that represents oppression and inequality.

The event is based around art and music because, often times, fighting human rights issues can be discouraging due to the negative stigmas and stories associated with them.

“We wanted to help people to feel hopeful in the midst of all of this, and… connect with people’s hearts before trying to connect with their heads,” Austin said.

Though the event is free to the public, a suggested donation of toiletries will be collected at the door in collaboration with The Freedom House of Detroit, which helps with displaced people and finding individuals a place to go.

“I [love] the fact that they’re taking toiletries as a donation; it’s something substantial that will help someone right here, right now, so I’m excited about that because it’s for the greater good,” said junior public relations major Haley Bussell, a musician for the event.

Other music groups performing include the Marquette-based band Mirador Motel and We Should Be Laughing, a Houghton band.

For more information on Amnesty International, visitamnestyusa.org or stop by an Amnesty International Marquette meeting at 8 p.m. on Wednesday in Jamrich room 1315.