Lawyers are human rights defenders either through their work in defending victims of human rights violations or in advocating for greater respect of human rights and the rule of law.
Their human rights work can advocate for the realization of one’s human dignity, equality, and civil and political rights. Lawyers also have the tools and expertise to defend and seek for restitution on behalf of those who have experienced human rights violations. They may also work towards shaping laws that reflect human rights principles such as equality, universality, dignity, fairness and respect at local, national, regional and international levels. Lawyers are able to utilize their access to the judicial system and expertise to advance human rights principles in courts through strategic cases.
The human rights work of lawyers requires them to oppose and denounce the actions of powerful actors such as governments, companies or private individuals responsible for human rights violations. This can leave them at risk in their own countries and at times, even abroad as they may be direct targets of threats, harassment, and violence.
Their work remains crucial to ensuring that we live in just and fair societies where our judicial systems hold those responsible accountable for their actions, regardless of their status.
Shelter City stands side by side with human rights lawyers.