In 2018, civil society will mark the 20th anniversary of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders. While the Declaration recognised the crucial role defenders play in upholding human rights, its framework has not prevented the killing of over 3500 defenders in the 20 years since. Many more continue to suffer escalating threats, attacks and criminalisation. If we are to build protections that are fit for purpose for the next 20 years, we must listen to the voices of at-risk defenders as they reflect on the successes and failures of the current system. This is why we are launching our campaign to stand Shoulder to Shoulder with Human Rights Defenders.
In the coming months PBI UK will be working tirelessly to advocate and engage with the UK government, to insist they step up their efforts to protect defenders.
In addition, we will be working hard to raise awareness of the issues faced by defenders among the public. We aim to build a groundswell of public support in favour of human rights defenders, to strengthen our calls for progress and foster lasting change.
However, we need your support to ensure this can happen. PBI has been providing direct protection to human rights defenders on the ground for over 35 years. Yet in the midst of a global trend of closing civil society space, we urgently need to increase our work at the international level, to secure the systematic change that is necessary to improve protections for every human rights defender globally. If you share our vision of a world where individuals and communities can defend their fundamental rights without fear of reprisals and violence then please consider donating to our campaign.