Human rights are at a turning point.
We have had unseen progress since the 1990’s in the adoption of universal and robust standards in international human rights law. However, various geopolitical factors are making the international environment in which human rights work takes place increasingly difficult and adverse.
Human rights are at best not seen as a priority. More frequently they are considered as an obstacle to security, to counterterrorism, and to the current dominant economic development models.
Governments and powerful business actors supporting these non-human rights centered models have a great influence on global policy-making in areas, such as development, the environment, climate change, and migration. These policies are designed outside of the UN human rights system, but have a profound impact on the enjoyment of human rights by a multitude of people.
This international political environment calls for a reclaiming of the central role that human rights shall have in any public policy effort at the national and international levels.
Within this context FI’s advocacy work will focus on placing human rights at the heart of international development, environmental and security policies.
To achieve this objective, Franciscans International implements an effective, coherent, and integrated advocacy agenda in thematic areas reflecting its three core “pillars”: human dignity, environmental justice and peace. These are:
1. No development without human rights: improving the lives of the most marginalized.
2. Environmental justice: protecting people and the environment by fostering human rights integration in relevant national and international laws and policies.
3. Human rights vs security: upholding rights in the context of conflicts, crises and crime prevention.
Franciscans International’s priority countries in 2017 are: Benin, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Kenya, Australia, Indonesia and West Papua, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Brazil, El Salvador and Haiti.
Photo Credit: © UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré