What NHRIs do
Complaints handling and investigation
Manual - Undertaking effective investigations
Requirements for an effective investigations team
Identifying issues and deciding whether to investigate
Planning an investigation
Setting up the interview
Organising the interview
Interviewing individuals who fall into a special category
Six principles for effective interviewing
Collecting physical evidence
Visiting a scene and collecting evidence
Writing an effective investigation report
Mainstreaming gender in NHRI investigations
Conducting Virtual Investigations
Conducting investigative interviews virtually
Mendez Principles on Effective Interviewing for Investigations
Engage with the international human rights framework
How NHRIs work
Sub-Committee on Accreditation (SCA)
SCA Rules of Procedure
Statement of Compliance (SOC) Template
SCA Procedure for Challenge Before the Bureau
SCA Practice Note 1 - Deferrals
SCA Practice Note 4 - NHRIs in Transition
SCA Practice Note 2 - Special Reviews
SCA Practice Note 5 - Sources of information to assess the performance of NHRIs
SCA Practice Note 3 - Assessing the Performance of NHRIs
A practical guide to the work of the SCA
Gender disaggregated data
Mental Health for NHRI Staff
Human rights issues
Human Rights Defenders (HRDs)
Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs)
Women Human Rights Defenders protection approaches
Global Report on the Situation of Women Human Rights Defenders
Establishing HRD focal point staff at NHRIs
Protection of Human Rights Defenders: Best practice and lessons learned
Report violations to the international human rights machinery on HRDs
NHRIs and the Protection of HRDs: Insights from Indonesia and Thailand
Secure management of information from HRDs
Monitoring the situation of HRDs: Case study from Kenya
NHRI reprisals as HRDs
Mongolia: Human Rights Defenders Law
The Situation Of Human Rights Defenders Working To Address Violence Based On Sexual Orientation And Gender Identity In Kenya
The Marrakech Declaration
The APF Regional Action Plan on Human Rights Defenders
Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders 2019
Front Line Defenders 2020 Global Analysis
Operational Guidelines - Regional Action Plan on Human Rights Defenders (RAP)
NHRIs are HRDs
What is an Early Warning System (EWS) for HRDs?
Defining Human Rights Focal Points
Model law on Human Rights Defenders
Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders 2016
Countering narratives against HRDs
UN declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRDs)
Business and Human Rights (BHR)
Emergency measures and COVID 19 - guidance document
The human rights dimensions of COVID-19
COVID-19 and NHRIs study
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)
Guiding principles on internal displacement
Handbook for the Protection of Internally Displaced Persons
The Pinheiro Principles
Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression and Sex Characteristics (SOGIESC)
Understanding sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics
Being L, G and B in Asia Pacific
Being transgender in Asia Pacific
Being intersex in Asia Pacific
International and regional developments in human rights law
The Yogyakarta Principles
The APF’s response to the Yogyakarta Principles
What more NHRIs can do
COVID-19 & LBGTI people
The right to a healthy environment
Intergovernmental mechanisms project (IGM)
Fact Sheet Series - Engaging with IGMs on the right to a healthy environment and climate change
IGM Fact Sheet 1 - NHRIs: Trusted partners for change
IGM Fact Sheet 2 - Introducing the right to a healthy environment
IGM Fact Sheet 3 - ASEAN and human rights
IGM Fact Sheet 4 - The Pacific Islands Forum
IGM Fact Sheet 5 - Climate change and human rights
IGM Fact Sheet 6 - The Sustainable Development Goals and Human Rights
Introducing the Intergovernmental Mechanisms Project
IGM Project - Baseline Assessment
NHRI engagement with regional mechanisms
NHRIs and environmental rights course
The human right to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment - HRC resolution
The Framework Principles on Human Rights and the Environment
How are human rights impacted by climate change?
The Aarhus Convention
The UN Special Rapportuer on the Right to a Healthy Environment
The Human Rights to Healthy Environment in Southeast Asia: National Human Rights Institutions
Escazú Regional Agreement
Human rights and climate change
Compendium of actions to address climate change and protect human rights
GANHRI Statement - Climate Change: The role of National Human Rights Institutions
Addressing Climate Change – UN Special Procedures
NHRI COP26 Symposium
Practical Guidance for NHRIs on Climate Change
Climate change and Human Rights: Contributions from NHRIs
Climate mobility and displacement
NHRIs in Humanitarian action
International Humanitarian Law (IHL)
Humanitarian action definition and terms
Human Rights Based Approach to disaster management in New Zealand
CHR Philippines and Typhoon Yolanda
Integrating humanitarian action into general operations - Philippines Commission on Human Rights (CHR)
Gender considerations in humanitarian action
The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC)
IASC Operational Guidelines on Protection of Persons in Natural Disasters
The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC)
IASC Guidelines on the inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action
Vulernable groups in humanitarian emergencies
Humanitarian principles and standards
- All Categories
- Human rights issues
- The right to a healthy environment
- Intergovernmental mechanisms project (IGM)
- Fact Sheet Series - Engaging with IGMs on the right to a healthy environment and climate change
- IGM Fact Sheet 1 - NHRIs: Trusted partners for change
Updated by Faso Aishath
NHRIs are uniquely positioned to drive sustained change at the national level by:
- Monitoring and reporting on the human rights situation in their country.
- Providing advice to government and the parliament.
- Receiving, investigating and resolving human rights complaints.
- Delivering human rights education for all sections of the community.
With a unique mandate set out in law, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) play a vital role to promote and protect the rights of all people, especially those most vulnerable to human rights violations. With strong powers and being independent from government, they are a cornerstone of an effective national human rights protection system.
A key role of all NHRIs – set out in the UN-adopted Paris Principles – is to engage with the United Nations and regional bodies.
NHRIs support the work of international and regional bodies by providing independent and reliable information and analysis.
They propose recommendations that can be made to their State to improve the human rights situation in their respective countries.
Another role of NHRIs is to promote and monitor implementation of recommendations made to their State by international and regional mechanisms.
Promoting NHRI engagement with regional bodies
While NHRIs have long-standing engagement with the United Nations – through the Human Rights Council, human rights treaty bodies, the special procedures and mechanisms such as the Universal Periodic Review – their interaction with regional bodies in the Asia Pacific has been more limited.
However, with many critical human rights issues requiring urgent country-to-country cooperation, NHRI engagement with regional bodies has never been more important.
The Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI), through its Sub-Committee on Accreditation, states that:
“NHRI participation in regional and international coordination bodies serves to reinforce their independence and effectiveness overall … This may lead to collectively strengthening each other’s positions and contributing to resolving regional human rights issues.”
In addition, the Human Rights Council identifies collaboration with NHRIs as one of the most important factors determining the effectiveness of regional mechanisms, especially through “coordinating and strengthening the [regional] arrangement’s decisions and increasing the likelihood of compliance”.
Strengthening regional strategies to counter climate change
One of the most urgent issues facing communities in South-East Asia and the Pacific is the impact of climate change and environmental harm. It is a priority both for NHRIs and regional inter-governmental mechanisms.
At the 2020 GANHRI Annual Conference, NHRIs from all regions pledged to work individually and collectively to promote human rights-based climate action.
They agreed to use their unique human rights mandate to add value to national, regional and international approaches to counter the impacts of climate change and environmental harm.
“NHRIs can help promote much more effective, informed and participatory climate action – action that can benefit people’s rights and preserve the environment.”
Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
At the regional level, NHRIs can strengthen the important work of inter-governmental mechanisms by:
- Collecting and sharing community-level information and experiences, including good practice approaches from civil society groups and traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples to promote the right to a healthy environment.
- Contributing independent, high-quality human rights analysis to support regional policy development on climate change and the right to a healthy environment.
- Advising government on implementing recommendations from regional mechanisms in laws, regulations, policies and procedures, as well as monitoring the progress of implementation.
- Promoting community awareness of regional strategies to address climate change and environmental harm through a comprehensive human rights education program.
- Engaging with business leaders to outline the practical measures they can take to respond to climate change, promote the right to a healthy environment and support communities affected by their operations.
- Building connections between regional bodies and the international human rights system, including with key UN agencies, forums and human rights special procedures.
- Engaging in regional and international processes to promote human rights-based action on climate change, including in relation to nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement.
NHRIs have a well-deserved reputation for independent, high-quality human rights analysis and policy advice. They have extensive and trusted relationships at the national, regional and international level to drive the change process. They are ideal partners for regional inter-governmental mechanisms in their efforts to counter the human rights impacts of climate change and environmental damage.
Download PDF: APF NHRI IGM Project - Fact Sheet 1.pdf
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