International Human Rights Monitoring
International Human Rights Monitoring We know that political leaders will not follow human rights obligations without pressure from attentive and informed residents working to ensure that international rights standards are honored in local practices. This takes work to learn about what specific legal obligations national and local leaders have and to monitor local practices to make sure they conform to international expectations. Through the US Human Rights Network, we're able to come together as grassroots US human rights organizers to draw international attention to the gaps between US international legal commitments and the actual practices in the communities where we live. See this link to the US Human Rights Network-International Mechanisms Work.
Universal Periodic Review 2019
The Universal Periodic Review process was launched by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006 to provide for periodic examination of the human rights performance of all 193 UN Member States. It represents a significant strengthening of international human rights procedures. For more details click here
The next US UPR runs from April 2019 through April 2020. All submissions of reports are due October 3, 2019.
The Human Rights Cities Alliance is organizing a UPR Cities Project to help cities and communities organize consultations and develop local reports that can both inform local leaders about human rights conditions and inform the national stakeholder report we will submit through the US Human Rights Network.
- On May 11, 2015 the United States human rights record was reviewed by the United Nations Human Rights Council during the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), which resulted in 348 recommendations to the U.S. Government. In September the U.S. Government will decide which recommendations they will accept and which they will reject. USHRN has compiled this brief overview of some of the top recommendations to help U.S. advocates raise awareness and advocate for adoption of these recommendations.
- UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights--Resource page on Universal Periodic Review
- Statistics Database: Look up recommendations made to all governments to improve human rights practices--this website allows users to track progress and view government responses to UPR recommendations.
Relevant Prior Documentation
- Prior UPR Reviews of US Human Rights Record
Civil Society/Stakeholder Reports
- 2015 US Human Rights Network UPR Stakeholder Report This report compiles documentation from grassroots human rights organizations across the United States working to advance people-centered human rights.
- 2010 Shadow Report- USHRN
- 2010 submission focusing on racial health disparities and discrimination
Other UN/Official Documentation on US Human Rights Practices
These reports are from other international review processes within the United Nations and/or the UN Human Rights Council. The United States Government is expected to take into account the recommendations of all of these various bodies, and the UPR process is where civil society groups can work to hold public officials accountable to these expectations. The reports below in particular speak to the concerns and needs of some of the most directly impacted communities in the United States.
- UN Expert Working Group on People of African Descent-US Country Report
- USHRN Report: 2018 Status of Human Rights in the United States
- 2018 Report of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights on US Country Visit
- UN Working Group on People of African Descent-Communications/Complaint Procedure
- State and Local Government Shadow Report for the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
- Report on State and Local Governmnents Compliance with the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights-List of Issues in Shadow Report
- Links to All International Human Rights Mechanisms
- UN Expert Working Group on People of African Descent
- Special Rapporteur on Poverty
- Special Rapporteur on adequate housing
- Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment
- Special Rapporteur on the right to food
- Special Rapporteur on the right to health
Background on International Human Rights Review Processes
- Advancing Racial Justice and Human Rights: Rights-Based Strategies for the Current Era: On June 1, 2018, the Human Rights Institute at Columbia University Law School convened its 15th annual CLE Symposium on Human Rights in the United States, a signature event of the Human Rights Institute’s Bringing Human Rights Home Lawyers’ Network. The day-long event brought together more than 150 leading U.S. lawyers, activists, and academics, along with federal and local government representatives to share strategies to advance racial justice within a domestic and global context increasingly hostile to human rights.
- Submission to the US Commission on Civil Rights regarding the importance of a national human rights infrastructure, from the perspective of HRI and state and local agencies
- UN Training Manual
- UN Human Rights Handbook
- Guide for advocates “Engaging UN Special Procedures to Advance Human Rights at Home”
- Desk Reference for State and Local Human Rights Agencies
- Implementing Recommendations from the Universal Periodic Review: A Toolkit for State and Local Human Rights and Human Relations Commissions