A human being has a right to education, health care, food and several other things that are embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This declaration was adopted in 1948 by the General Assembly of the United Nations.
Yet, even in this modern age, human rights are routinely violated everywhere around the world. As a result, human rights organizations have sprouted up advocating everything from family planning to sex workers’ rights. These organizations have broadened the appeal of global activism through their advocacy campaigns.
Here are some of the biggest human rights organizations in the world.
Amnesty International is a non-profit organization founded in 1961 and based in London. It has a network of more than 3 million supporters, activists and members in over 150 countries and territories. It has advocacies for children, indigenous people, health issues, the oppressed and the poor, plus several other categories.
Association for Women’s Rights in Development
The Association for Women’s Rights in Development was founded in 1982 and is based in Toronto. It is involved in the research, networking and lobbying for women’s rights around the world. Its reports and news briefs have a feminist stand, even as the organization creates capacity-building strategies to strengthen and support women’s rights.
Child Rights Information Network
The Child Rights Information Network was founded in 1995 and is based in London. It aims to elevate campaigns and enforce treaties and agreements that call for the full recognition of the rights of a child. It also conducts advocacy campaigns and analysis to promote and defend children’s rights.
Global Network of Sex Work Projects
They say that it is the oldest job in the world. People usually look down upon them. But sex workers are also people who have as much right as anybody else on the planet. That is what the Global Network of Sex Work Projects is fighting for. Founded in 1990 and based in Edinburgh in Scotland, the organization aims to influence policy and build leadership among sex workers. It also opposes the incrimination of their trade.
Human Rights First
Human Rights First is a non-profit organization founded in 1978 and based in New York and Washington, D.C. It does a lot of research and fact-finding work, even as it provides assistance to asylum-seekers and advocates versus U.S. measures that result to torture. It first gained traction in the 80’s when the U.S. government was actively propping up dictators all over the world despite the abysmal human rights records of these leaders.
Human Rights Information and Documentation Systems, International
The Human Rights Information and Documentation Systems, International was founded in 1982 and is based in Geneva. It aims to improve documentation methods and information technologies by helping human rights groups document, process, analyze and present research and other data in an organized and logical manner. This can be done through personalized consultations, email correspondences and on-site support and training.
Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch was founded in 1968 and is based in New York. It has an extensive grassroots network whose reports form the basis of its research and advocacy against discrimination. It also seeks to uphold political freedom and to protect civilians from inhuman conduct associated during wartime or civil unrests.
International Federation for Human Rights
The International Federation for Human Rights was founded in 2009 and is based in Paris. It has 164 member organizations under its wing and it aims to end the impunity of violators of human rights. It also seeks to ease and facilitate the work of human rights champions and defenders and to promote the universality of all rights, especially those for women and migrants. Its members are active all over the world, even in countries where getting ground information could get tricky, like North Korea and Zimbabwe. It also researches and offers information through press releases and open letters on a variety of topics on human rights, including women’s rights, migrant’s rights, terrorism and international justice. It only accepts non-profit organizations for membership, though it does welcome donations from individuals and companies.
International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans and Intersex Association
The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans and Intersex Association was founded in 1978 and is based in Brussels in Belgium. It has 690 groups from 110 countries in its fold and its main focus is the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans and intersexual people. It provides information on discriminatory practices, laws and attitudes toward people just because of their gender identity and sexual orientation. The organization works with its members in order to draw attention from the public and the government through programs, protest actions, media work and diplomacy.
United for Human Rights
United for Human Rights was founded in 2004 and is based in Los Angeles. It helps create books, videos and other educational materials about human rights and provide these for free to educators. The organization’s main target market is the student-age population who are given suggestions on how to take action against human rights violations in the community.
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights was founded in 1993 and is based in Geneva. It serves as the secretariat of the UN Human Rights Council and aims to monitor human rights situations and implement on-the-ground solutions to safeguard against abuses.
World Organization Against Torture
The World Organization Against Torture was founded in 1986 and is based in Geneva. It aims to fight against torture, summary executions, enforced disappearances and other cruel and degrading treatment. It counts among its membership 297 organizations from around the world spread over 97 countries. These organizations serve as the ground research crew that work side by side with the main secretariat in the main office. It then reports and follows up on cases of torture and abuse. It also gives legal, medical and social assistance and support to victims and to those at risk. It specifically aims to protect defenders of human rights, women at risk of facing violence and children vulnerable to violations.
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