Civil society and un human rights mechanisms
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Civil Society and UN Human Rights Mechanisms. OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina. Treaty Bodies and Civil Society. Parallel reporting (or shadow report) After the submission of the State report and before its consideration

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Civil Society and UN Human Rights Mechanisms

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Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Civil Societyand UN Human Rights Mechanisms

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Treaty Bodies and Civil Society

  • Parallel reporting (or shadow report)

    • After the submission of the State report and before its consideration

    • Public with possibility of keeping it confidential

    • Not a UN official document

    • Due consideration should be given to the reporting guidelines

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Treaty Bodies and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • TreatyBody Sessions

    • Participation in pre-sessionalWorking Groups (CESCR; CEDAW; CRC)

    • Oral submissionsduring the session (HRC; CESCR; CAT; CEDAW; CMW) – public for CESCR and CEDAW

    • Informal briefing throughsideevents

  • Follow-up to Treaty Body recommendations

    • Broad dissemination

    • Cooperate with the State entities, NHRI, and other stakeholders in the implementation

    • Monitor the implementation by the State

    • Report to UN HR mechanisms

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Treaty Bodies and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Individual complaints

    • Possible with all Treaty Bodies but SPT, CESCR and CRC (until CESCR-OP and CRC-OPIC enter into force);

    • A series of limitations, including:

      • After all available and effective domestic remedies have been exhausted;

      • The complaint does not relate to a widespread pattern of human rights violations;

      • 2 to 3 years for a final decision.

  • Confidential inquiries

    • Possible under CAT, CEDAW, CRPD and CED (such an inquiry was initiatied by HLC-Belgrade in 1997)

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society

  • WhatcanNGOs do?

  • Submit individual cases to special procedures (communications)

  • Provide information and analysis on specific human rights concerns

  • Provide support for special procedures’ country visits

  • Work locally or nationally to advocate, disseminate, follow-up on the work of special procedures and their recommendations

  • Invite mandate-holders to participate in their own initiatives

  • Nominate candidates for consideration as special procedures mandate-holders

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications

  • Strengths

    • may be used for individual cases as well as for a more general pattern of violations

    • they allow for urgent or preventive action (known as urgent appeals)

    • Wherever the cases occur, even in States, which have not ratified any of the human rights treaties

    • No need for exhausting all domestic remedies

    • NGOs can act on behalf of victims (with their consent)

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications

  • Limitations

    • Need for a special procedure in place covering the specific human rights issue at stake

    • Special procedures are not legally binding mechanisms

    • Procedures vary depending on the mandate

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications: content

    • Identification of the NGO

    • Description of the circumstances of the incident(s) or problem

    • Date and place of the incident(s) or problem

    • If it involves individual victims, provide information on the victims a linkage with the human rights violations reported

    • Specify that you have the consent of the victim(s)

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications: content

  • Having the consent of the victim(s) means:

    • The victim(s) are aware and agree that you send a case to special procedures on their behalf

    • The victim(s) are to be informed that if special procedures mandate-holders will take up the case, a letter concerning what happened will be sent to the authorities

    • The victim(s) are to be aware that, if the case is taken up, a summary of what happened will appear in a public report of the Special Rapporteur(s)

    • The victim(s) can specify if they prefer that their full name or just the initials appear in the public report.

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications: content

  • If it involves a group of people provide details to identify them and link them to the human rights violation reported (e.g. group of people belonging to a minority being refused access to education)

  • Identification of the alleged perpetrators of the violation (when applicable)

  • If applicable, you can include additional information:

    • whether the incident(s) or problem has been reported to the relevant national authorities

    • if so, indicate whether the authorities have taken any action

  • Use the questionnaires available on the Internet to facilitate submission of information

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

Special Procedures and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • Communications: content

  • The information has to be:

    • Clear

    • Consistent

    • Credible

    • Brief but with supporting documents to be submitted upon request if need be (i.e. standard submissions are normally of 1 or 2 pages)

    • Submitted in English, French or Spanish

  • And keep sending follow up information on positive or negative developments on the case you reported

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

UPR and Civil Society

  • Before the review

    • National Consultations

    • Submission of reports

    • Lobbying/advocacy

  • During the Working Group

    • Observation and lobbying

    • Organisation of side events

  • Between the Working Group and the Plenary Session

    • Work on the recommendations (influence the State in responding to recommendations)

    • Dissemination of the report and other lobbying and sensitisation activities

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


Civil society and un human rights mechanisms

UPR and Civil Society (cont’d)

  • During the Plenary Session

    • Possibility of delivering a statement under certain conditions

  • After the Plenary Session

    • Activities for the implementation of the recommendations

OHCHR-OSCE Workshop on NGO reporting and monitoring – 11-12 July 2012 - Pristina


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