A series of organizations in charge of monitoring and ensuring compliance with these rights.
Throughout history, nations and civil society itself have used various institutions to ensure the protection and fulfillment of these rights. Next, we will look at several of the main institutions that protect Human Rights around the world.
protect Human Rights
Human rights include the right to life and liberty, not to be subjected to slavery or torture, to freedom of opinion and expression, to education and work, among many others. These rights are inherent to all people, without distinction of race, sex, nationality, ethnic origin, language, religion or any other condition, according to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights approved in 1948.
Let’s see which organizations are in charge of monitoring and controlling the fulfillment of these rights.
1. Amnesty International
This global non-profit organization, present in more than 150 countries, works for the right to truth, justice and reparation for victims of abuses, such as unfair trials, arbitrary detentions, extrajudicial executions or violence of gender.
In addition, Amnesty International defends the human rights of migrants, asylum seekers, refugees, displaced persons or victims of trafficking. Also to the civilian population in armed conflicts and victims of violence by States and other political and business actors.
This civil organization usually campaigns against torture and ill-treatment, and in favor of sexual and reproductive rights, against the death penalty and for effective control of weapons.
2. Transparency International
Transparency International is a non-governmental organization, founded in Germany in 1993, that promotes measures against corporate crimes and political corruption at the international level. It is made up of more than 100 delegations in different countries.
This organization usually publishes every year and since 1995 the Corruption Perception Index, which measures the levels of corruption in the public sector, based on surveys of experts and companies. This index has been criticized for its poor reliability.
In Spain, Transparency International began working in 2000 and is currently managed by the José Ortega y Gasset Foundation. At the state level, it also has indexes that measure corruption in municipalities, autonomous communities and county councils.
The Ombudsman is the institutional figure in charge of defending the fundamental rights and public freedoms of citizens, by supervising the activity of public administrations.
In Spain, he is elected by the Congress of Deputies and the Senate, by a three-fifths majority. It is an institution without executive powers, so its strength is rather persuasive and political. It has the capacity to issue reports to the Cortes Generales, although they are not binding.
4. United Nations Human Rights Council
The Human Rights Council, created in 2006, is an intergovernmental institution of the United Nations that is responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights throughout the world, as well as addressing situations of human rights violations and make recommendations on them.
This body has the ability to discuss all human rights issues and situations that require its attention throughout the year. Meets at the United Nations Office at Geneva.
The Council is made up of 47 United Nations Member States who are elected by the United Nations General Assembly. The Human Rights Council replaced the former United Nations Commission on Human Rights.
5. United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
UNICEF is a United Nations organization based in the United States with a presence in more than 190 countries, whose objective is to provide humanitarian aid to children and families in developing countries.
With the Declaration of the Rights of the Child promoted in 1959, UNICEF became an essential agent in responding to the needs of children and protecting their rights. In 1965 he received the Nobel Peace Prize.
Among her priorities are helping children and families in extremely poor areas of Africa and other parts of the world. UNICEF also works on health, water, sanitation and nutrition programs, as well as promoting education and social participation for children.
6. United Nations Development Program (UNDP)
UNDP was created in 1958 by the United Nations General Assembly to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of nations and their citizens. Currently, it is present in 178 countries and is the body responsible for implementing the Sustainable Development goals, which include aspects such as climate change, economic inequality, innovation, sustainable consumption, the promotion of peace or justice.
Its priorities are poverty reduction, prevention and recovery from the economic crisis, energy and the environment, information technology or HIV-AIDS. Since 1990, UNDP has published the report on human development or Human Development Index (HDI), an indicator of achievements in fundamental aspects of people’s development, such as having a long and healthy life, acquiring knowledge and enjoying a dignified life.
7. Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch is a non-profit, non-governmental human rights organization made up of some 400 members from various countries around the world. Founded in 1978, it is an institution recognized for rigorous fact-finding, impartial reporting, effective use of the media, and upholding clear rights goals.
This organization opposes basic human rights violations, including capital punishment and sex discrimination. She is also known for her defense of civil liberties and fundamental rights, such as freedom of religion and of the press.
Every year Human Rights Watch presents the Human Rights Defenders Award to activists around the world who have demonstrated leadership and courage in defending human rights.
8. Human Rights Without Frontiers (HRWF)
This non-governmental organization was created in 1989 as a non-profit association in Belgium. Its main objectives are to shape European and international politics to strengthen democracy; defend the rule of law; and protect human rights around the world.
HRWF seeks to strengthen the culture of human rights by exchanging information, publishing reports and organizing seminars and events that educate policy makers and inform the general public.
Other priorities are: addressing violations of religious freedom, denouncing the trafficking of women for sexual exploitation or the protection of ethnic and linguistic minorities, as well as the violation of human rights in countries such as China, Korea or Russia.
9. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
UNESCO is an institution founded in 1945 that promotes human rights and the rule of law, with special emphasis on the right to education, information, freedom of opinion and expression, cultural rights and the right to participate in scientific advances and participate in technological and social progress.
This organization has a pacifist vocation and, among other issues, particularly supports literacy.
In education, this body prioritizes the achievement of elementary education adapted to current needs. It also promotes collaboration with teachers, family planners, educational administrators, and encourages the construction of schools and the provision of equipment necessary for their start-up and operation.
10. International Labor Organization (ILO)
The ILO is an agency of the United Nations, founded in 1919, which deals with matters relating to labor and industrial relations. Its main objectives are: to promote labor rights, promote decent work opportunities, improve social protection and strengthen dialogue to address work-related issues.
Its operation is based on a tripartite structure, in which workers and employers have the same right to vote as governments during the deliberations of their main bodies. Every year, they meet in Geneva to celebrate the International Labor Conference. In 1969, he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his achievements in social justice.