Building Awareness

Developing electronic advocacy groups to influence government on issues of peace and social justice

MoveOn creates electronic advocacy groups to influence government on issues of peace and social justice.  It is a grassroots organization aimed at involving ordinary people in politics in order to narrow the gap between public opinion and legislative action.  With a network of over 600,000 “online activists,” MoveOn helps busy but concerned citizens find their political voice by organizing “electronic advocacy groups” around issues such as campaign finance, environmental and energy issues, impeachment, gun safety, and nuclear disarmament.  

Using videotaped prosecution of police officers for human rights violations as an educational tool

The Turkish Police Academy uses videotaped prosecution of policemen for human rights violations to teach police academy candidates about the consequences of violating human rights.  This tactic was used as part of a larger strategy in police academy human rights education for police candidates to incorporate the understanding, value and use of investigation and interrogation procedures that do not violate the human rights of the accused and prevent abuse of power.

Developing a Corporate Sector Model to promote cost-effective and socially-responsible action on HIV/AIDS in the community

HIV/AIDS is a devastating disease that affects populations all over the world, particularly the young and productive industrial workforce in India.  The cost associated with treating the disease is beyond the means of most persons living with HIV/AIDS.  Tata Iron & Steel Company Ltd (TISCO), recognizing that the most inexpensive and cost-effective approach to battling the spread of HIV/AIDS is through education and prevention, developed a Corporate Sector Model to prevent the disease.

Creating local level shadow committees to promote women’s rights

The Civic Democratic Initiatives Support Foundation (CDF) in Yemen created local level “shadow committees,” parallel structures to official policy-making bodies, to promote issues related to women’s rights and women’s participation in development. The capacity building process not only enhanced the ability of local women to advance their issues in their local public political sphere but also resulted in local level NGOs promoting women’s rights.

CDF carried out a number of steps to develop the local level shadow committees:

Creating an ombudsman institution to provide recourse to victims of discrimination

In Sweden, the Discrimination Ombudsman (DO) is a political institutional body that was created to allow citizens to assert their right to be protected against discrimination and to provide both advice and litigation power. The DO is one of four Ombudsman offices that are used to strengthen political and social protections for those victimized by discrimination.

Creating an assessment tool to evaluate the human rights impact of businesses

The Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) has developed the Human Rights Compliance Assessment (HRCA), a tool that comprises a concrete and tangible list of factors which businesses should consider when assessing the impact of their operations on the people affected by it, whether as employees or as inhabitants of the local area. The aim of the HRCA is to provide companies with a tool to audit their practices, to identify areas where violations are likely so that these areas can be monitored, and to facilitate action to mitigate existing breaches and prevent future ones.

For more information on this tactic, read our in-depth case study.

Creating a child board and village child protection networks to combat child abuse and trafficking

At the beginning of 2005, Enfants & Developpement (E&D) in Cambodia set up a Participatory Child Protection Project with communal councils covering 126 villages. The project piloted a new initiative to intervene in child abuse and combat child trafficking issues through the establishment of Child Boards at the district level.  At the time of this writing, it was too early to assess the impacts of the project, however, a high degree of success towards the goal of protecting children from being abused was anticipated due to variety of reasons. These include:

Using the power of the media to send targeted messages to people in a position to end abuses

African Public Radio (APR) used its power as a media entity to influence individuals and groups who could help fix the situation in Burundi’s hospitals, where poor people were being held against their will because they could not pay their bills. Eventually, in partnership with local NGOs, APR successfully pressured the government to order the people’s release.

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