New human rights commendations in Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Medals 

CILIP, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and Amnesty International have announced a major new partnership which will commend human rights in children’s literature. The human rights partnership will span both the Carnegie Medal, awarded to the author of an outstanding book for children and the Kate Greenaway Medal, awarded for an outstanding illustrated book for children and young people.

Beginning with the 2016 medals, a title from each of the prestigious shortlists will receive the Amnesty CILIP Honour, a commendation for the books that most distinctively illuminate, uphold or celebrate freedoms. The books receiving the commendation will be able to carry an Amnesty CILIP Honour logo.

The inaugural Amnesty CILIP honour judging panel will include last year’s Carnegie medal winner, Tanya Landman whose book Buffalo Soldier dealt with issues including racism, slavery and gender discrimination.

The winners will be announced at the Medals ceremony in June 2016.

Nick Poole, CILIP Chief Executive, said: “Amnesty International and CILIP both oppose censorship and support the right to intellectual freedom, so this is a very natural partnership. The Amnesty CILIP Honour will highlight the fact that so many of the books chosen by expert youth librarians for the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals have human rights at their heart.”

Amnesty International UK’s Head of Publishing Nicky Parker, said: “Stories are absolutely central to Amnesty’s work and we’ve got a long and proud history of promoting children’s literature.

Books have a unique ability to inspire empathy, broaden horizons and empower young readers.

We hope this award will make it easy for parents and teachers to identify books which will teach children about truth, freedom and justice and encourage them to feel they can shape a better world.”

Amnesty will also provide human rights education resources for every shortlisted book which both Amnesty and CILIP will promote to schools via CILIP’s existing school shadowing scheme and Amnesty’s TeachRights network.

The Amnesty CILIP Honour will be officially launched at a party to reveal the shortlists for the 2016 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals, to be held at Amnesty’s Human Rights Action Centre in Shoreditch, London, on 15 March.