Resource Library

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The Voice of Youth: How Youth Can Take on a Critical Role in Human Rights Advocacy

Summary available:

Young people make up an ever-growing portion of the world’s population. As of 2014, the number of youth, ages 10-24, rose to nearly 1.8 billion, or slightly less than 25 percent of the world population. As youth compose a greater share of the population, questions emerge about the role youth will play in addressing the issues relevant to their future. Empowering youth to engage and take an active role in advocacy can play a critical role in societal change and improving human rights. Thus, organizations increasingly seek new ways to engage youth in civil society.

New Tactics in Human Rights through its online conversation, The Voice of Youth: How Youth Can Take on a Critical Role in Human Rights Advocacy, discusses ways how youth are involved in social change, address the challenges to their interests and the role of human rights organizations and practitioners in empowering youth.

Reconciliation Post-Conflict: Approaches, Practices and Realities

Summary Available

Daily headlines around the globe portray the numerous conflicts that arise as a result of heated points of contention. Seemingly disparate ideologies, unequal distribution of resources, political, ethnic, cultural and religious differences can all be contributing factors in the emergence of conflict between groups. In the aftermath of conflict, what role can reconciliation play as a path forward; toward healing, peaceful relations, improved communication and functioning societies?

Where does the process of reconciliation begin, with whom and when? These questions and more were discussed in New Tactics in Human Rights Conversation - Reconciliation Post-Conflict: Approaches, Practices and Realities. This online conversation sought to identify the role of reconciliation in post-conflict environments. Practitioners shared experiences, lessons learned, approaches, and challenges with the reconciliation process from the perspective of reconciliation efforts around the world.

Online Blackout to Protest Anti-Freedom of Speech Laws Against Press on the Internet

The “Free Net” campaign joined forces with Jordanian online newspapers in announcing the 28th of August, 2012, to be internet blackout day. Online websites along with online news sites decided to turn their pages black in protest of the legal restrictions regarding press freedom after passing a bill on press and publication.

Using online petitions to gain international leverage against an oppressive government

 
The Coalition Youth of 14 Feb Revolution used an online petition campaign to protest Bahrain as the host for the Formula One Race. The activists were able to mobilize almost 500,000 people worldwide to sign the petition, eventually leading to the cancellation of the race in Bahrain in 2011. The impetus for the campaign was the Bahraini government’s savage suppression of peaceful protestors earlier that year.
 

Using village strengths to combat child labour and other exploitative practices: Building Child Friendly Villages

Combating child labour requires programme interventions that are comprehensive with a holistic approach that not only targets children, but also their families and communities, the recruiters, traffickers and exploiters, government officials, and society at large. There are millions of out-of-school children who have the potential to join the soaring numbers of child labourers. Efforts need to be made to prevent the entry of the non-child labourer into the labour market which fuels illiteracy, unemployment and poverty.

Engaging pro-bono lawyers and peer legal counselors for expanding access to justice

Kituo Cha Sheria (Legal Advice Centre) helps to empower prisoners to advocate for themselves by providing legal education in Kenyan prisons.

Issues of poverty, marginalization, and vulnerability affect people’s access to justice. Kituo Cha Sheria, founded in 1973 by a small group of legal professionals, works to combat this lack of access by providing free education to the most marginalized communities, particularly prison inmates. In Kenya, the ratio of legal practitioners to the population is 1 to 5,000, so these services are desperately needed.

Improving Access to Justice for Children and Teens

Summary available

Children encounter unique obstacles to accessing justice mechanisms for seeking remedies to human rights violations. Providing access of justice for children requires “child sensitive mechanisms” that identify their needs and integrates their voices in justice systems. As a result of the challenges children face when accessing justice, The United Nations passed in April 2014 a third optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (OP3) enabling children to bring complaints about violations directly to the committee on the rights of the child if they have not found a solution at a national level. Improving access to justice for children can occur by examining the challenges faced by children, the use of alternative dispute mechanisms, collective litigation strategies, tactics to help child victims through the court process and how to use regional and international complaint mechanisms. This conversation took place in October 2014.

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