Human rights advocacy draws Sims to Japan as Ambassador Kennedy’s guest

     New U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy is greeted by tsunami survivors in Minamisanriku, Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, Monday, Nov. 25, 2013. (Shizuo Kambayashi/AP Photo, file)

    New U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy is greeted by tsunami survivors in Minamisanriku, Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, Monday, Nov. 25, 2013. (Shizuo Kambayashi/AP Photo, file)

    An invitation abroad will keep Pa. State Representative Brian Sims busy during the Thanksgiving holiday recess. Newly appointed U.S. Ambassador Caroline Kennedy has asked Sims to accompany her to the embassy in Japan for her first major reception.

    The trip coincides with the 65th anniversary of the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Sims, who is a civil rights attorney and LGBT advocate is expected to meet with groups to discuss marriage equality and women’s reproductive rights.

    “I am deeply honored that Ambassador Kennedy has asked me to participate in this historic occasion and represent the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania at one of her first major events in Japan,” Sims said. “Freedom and equality are universal ideals, and I am eager to meet with and learn from our friends in Japan as we discuss human rights around the globe.”

    The week-long tour of the Japanese cities of Osaka, and Tokyo will culminate in a reception in honor of Human Rights Day, which commemorates the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

    When the House resumes session on Dec. 9, Sims is expected to introduce a resolution commemorating the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recognizing December 10, 2013 as “International Human Rights Day in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

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