HUMAN RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS
Globally, the champions of human rights have most often been citizens, not government officials. In particular, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have played a primary role in focusing the international community on human rights issues.
NGOs monitor the actions of governments and pressure them to act according to human rights principles.
Some of these groups are listed alphabetically below with descriptions based on their website information:
Children’s Defense Fund (CDF): The CDF is a child advocacy organization that works to ensure a level playing field for all children. CDF champions policies and programs that lift children out of poverty, protect them from abuse and neglect and ensure their right to equal care and education. www.childrensdefense.org
Human Rights Action Center:Universal Declaration of Human Rights and uses the arts and technologies to innovate, create and develop new strategies to stop human rights abuses. They also support growing human rights groups all over the world.www.humanrightsactioncenter.org
Human Rights Watch:www.hrw.org
Human Rights Without Frontiers: (HRWF)
HRWF focuses on monitoring, research and analysis in the field of human rights, as well as promotion of democracy and the rule of law on the national and international level.www.hrwf.net
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP):www.naacp.org
Simon Wiesenthal Center:www.wiesenthal.com
NTERGOVERNMENTAL AND GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights:
Human Rights Council:
An intergovernmental body with membership encompassing forty-seven states, the Human Rights Council has the task of promoting and protecting human rights internationally. Its mechanisms to forward these ends include a Universal Periodic Review which assesses situations in all 192 UN Member States, an Advisory Committee which provides expertise on human rights issues, and a Complaints Procedure for individuals and organizations to bring human rights violations to the attention of the Council.
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO):UNESCO’s goal is to build peace in the minds of men. Its work in the field of human rights aims to strengthen awareness and acts as a catalyst for regional, national and international action in human rights.
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees:This office directs and coordinates international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country.
US State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor:The US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor strives to learn the truth and state the facts in all of its human rights investigations, annual reports on country conditions, etc. The bureau takes action to stop ongoing abuses and maintains partnerships with organizations committed to human rights.
Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe (OSCE):The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the OSCE, comprised of fifty-six participating states from Europe, Central Asia and North America, is engaged in human rights activities focusing on freedom of movement and religion and preventing torture and trafficking in persons.
HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONS
Commission for Human Rights, Council of Europewww.coe.int
European Union Ombudsman:www.ombudsman.europa.eu
European Commission Directorate for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities:www.ec.europa.eu/social
African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights:www.achpr.org
The Asian Human Rights Commission:www.ahrchk.net