Rights are guaranteed to any person irrespective of nationality, gender, race, religion and many other aspects (United Nations (UN, 2011). According to (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR, 2011), every individual is entitled to equality. Varied rights have been affected according to varied beliefs, locations, cultures and many others prompting the advocacy for fair treatment from a global perspective. Varied organizations have been established to advocate for the minorities and those unfairly treated, hence major campaigns for human rights throughout the world (Skogly, 2009).
This paper aims at assessing the success of past campaigns for human rights and effective tactics utilized to assist in advancing their cause. To garner more insight in the success focus will dwell on two issues connected to human rights campaigns, which are democracy and discrimination.
The success of human rights in the past can be attributed to the results of the missions, and activities related to their advocacy. Furthermore, the individuals concerned (Nash, 2005) with the advocacy in significant factors such as democracy and discrimination.
Success of past human rights campaigns
Campaigns advocating for varied human rights have been successful through transition of human rights from reactive approaches to more efforts geared strategies. On the other hand (The Center for Victims of Torture, 2004) claims that the past tactics used in advocating for human rights issues had utilized force approaches without consideration of the persons suffering. This means more focus was generated on exposing individual states where these inhumane acts occurred. More so, it led to conflicts as state defended themselves hence loss of focus on the victims. With reference to democracy and discrimination issues, campaigns to advance their cause in the past have been partially successful, especially on democracy issue. OHCHR (2011) affirms that past human rights campaigns have been successful with example of discrimination facilitating advocacy for minorities.
Tactics most effective for advancing their cause
In the past, there have been mixed perceptions on the effectiveness of campaigns tactics used in advocating for human rights issues. For instance in advocating for democracy, it has led to conflicting of ideas based on the involvement of human rights organization and varying state. According to (Vanhala, 2009), though tactics used in the past have generated varied views they effectively facilitated more advancement. For instance, discrimination has portrayed significant results in varied states and success of tactics utilized by activists as well as organizations.
Currently tactics have advanced in terms of implementation of policies to garner their effectiveness in outcomes envisioned.
According to (The Center for Victims of Torture, 2004), varied tactics have been implemented to advance the advocacy of human rights as opposed to the past tactics. Prevention tactic has been integrated to predict situations where individuals’ are prone to harm hence formulate plans to mitigate their occurrence in reference to democracy, AI (2011) notes that there have been situations throughout the globe where democracy has not been adequately exercised. Therefore, international organizations engage observing situations to predict with respect to the mood created in a particular location. Mostly, these incidences occur in reference to equal rights to suffrage (OHCHR, 2011). Chapman & Ramsay (2011) note that, collaboration with governments to facilitate democratic activities, result to preventive measures adopted by most human rights campaigning organizations. On the other hand, discrimination has also been a concern in aspect of prevention, where, organizations advocating for human rights formulate preventive policies used to assist individuals once discriminatory acts actualizes (Amnesty International (AI, 2011)
These tactics presents challenges to the people involved in human rights campaigns. This is due to the fact that, situations requiring intervention are ongoing hence prompt strategies formulation. This can be associated with democracy, where intervention results to conflicting ideas hence creating more tension. This fact has been evident in the past with the current approaches focusing on persuading the leaders to act with human rights concerns (Patrias & Frager, 2001). In terms of discrimination, Chapmen & Ramsay (2011) indicate that the approaches taken focus on formulating policies and constitution to curb these issues.
Skogly (2009) explains that these tactics are utilized to deal with occurrences aftermath. Nash (2005) further asserts that, these tactics when applied to democracy, seeks to deal with the issues that lead to factors aligned to democracy deficits such as impunity, discrimination and many more. More so, the organizations dealing with human rights campaigns focus on sharing of responsibilities with governments to deal with democracy issues as well as discrimination issues. The Center for Victims of Torture (2004) adds that collaborations between governments and organizations assists in developing constitutions, seeking justice for victims (AI, 2011) and (Miller, 2010) as well as assisting victims recover.
The comparison between past campaigns and the present situations can be differentiated with approaches implemented as well as the development of new tactics. However, they are still significant, since they facilitated the development in advancements to the current tactics utilized.
AI. (2011). Learn About Human Rights. Retrieved 14th June 2011 from, Amnesty International website: http://www.amnesty.org/en/human-rights
Chapman, C., & Ramsay, K. (2011). Two Campaigns to Strengthen United Nations Mechanisms on Minority Rights. International Journal on Minority & Group Rights, 18(2), 185-199. doi:10.1163/157181111X565657
Miller, H. (2010). From ‘rights-based’ to ‘rights-framed’ approaches: a social constructionist view of human rights practice. International Journal of Human Rights, 14(6), 915-931. doi:10.1080/13642987.2010.512136
Nash, K. (2005). Human Rights Culture: Solidarity, Diversity and the Right to be Different. Citizenship Studies, 9(4), 335-348. doi:10.1080/13621020500211305
OHCHR. (2011). Human Rights. Retrieved 14th June, 2011 from, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights website: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/AboutUs/Pages/WhoWeAre.aspx
Patrias, C., & Frager, R. A. (2001). ‘This Is Our Country, These Are Our Rights’: Minorities and the Origins of Ontario’s Human Rights Campaign. Canadian Historical Review, 82(1), 1. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.
SKOGLY, S. I. (2009). Global Responsibility for Human Rights†. Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, 29(4), 827-847. doi:10.1093/ojls/gqp028
The Center for Victims of Torture. (2004). New tactics in Human Rights: A resource for Practitioners. Minneapolis: The New Tactics inhuman Rights Project.
UN. (2011). Human Rights. Retrieved 14th June, 2011 from, Unite Nations website: http://www.un.org/en/rights/
Vanhala, L. (2009). Anti-discrimination policy actors and their use of litigation strategies: the influence of identity politics. Journal of European Public Policy, 16(5), 738-754. doi:10.1080/13501760902983473