Central to today's human rights movement is the involvement of non-governmental organizations in using international human rights mechanisms in advocating for legal reform and human rights protections at the local and international levels. International human rights policy fora such as the United Nations
and mechanisms of human rights law such as the Inter-American Court and Commission of Human Rights within the Organization of American States
, offer activists and their organizations powerful tools in raising awareness of and gaining justice for human rights abuses.
To broaden the participation of local activists in the international human rights community and to increase their influence in establishing human rights standards, IHRLG integrates international advocacy training into all our programs and maintains special initiatives to increase human rights protections around the world.
Drawing on our in-country presence, we bring the voices of local activists to the attention of the international human rights community and integrate those voices into foreign policy discussions and actions. Each spring, IHRLG program teams nominate local human rights leaders from under-represented communities to participate in our Advocacy Bridge Program, conducted in our Washington office and in Geneva during the annual session of the UN Commission on Human Rights, where more than 150 governments meet annually to review human rights violations in all parts of the world.