chapter  8
9 Pages

Preventive strategies of NGOs

Nongovernmental organizations in the field of human rights are the life-blood of the human rights movement. They promote awareness of existing human rights norms, urge the adoption of new norms where needed, undertake research on thematic issues as well as on particular situations, denounce violations of human rights, and engage in advocacy for the promotion and protection of human rights that is invaluable. Overall, their work is intended to have a preventive effect. Nevertheless, major human rights organizations such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, or the International Federation for Human Rights do not have pronounced preventive human rights strategies. They are mainly caught up in advocacy on particular situations or issues. This book argues that the human rights movement, in the future,

should place more and more emphasis on preventive human rights strategies alongside traditional promotional and protecting ones. In a discussion of the roles of human rights NGOs in this regard, the central question must be: are NGOs doing what they should to contribute to preventive efforts? Our answer to this would be that they are contributing to some extent but that, for the most part, they are not (see Table 8.1). NGOs should be expected to contribute more to the development and maintenance of a global watch over human security and human rights.