Civil society participation

Published on February 14, 2023

As we embark on another year of activism for sexual rights, we wanted to share with you our highlights of 2022. While the UN human rights system continues to be confronted by multiple challenges –from funding shortages, geopolitical tensions and polarisation and attempts to undermine multilateralism to the presence and influence of regressive and conservative actors, we have made steadfast progress in advancing sexual rights in this system. Read below for our highlights of 2022.

Published on December 15, 2022

The 42nd session of the Universal Periodic review begins on the 23rd of January 2023. The working group session will take place from 23 January to 3 February 2023. 13 Countries will be under review during the session: Czechia, Gabon, Benin, Switzerland, Argentina, Ghana, Guatemala, the Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Japan, Sri Lanka and Zambia. In collaboration with our partners, the SRI collaborated on reports for Guatemala, Japan, Pakistan, Switzerland and Zambia.

Published on December 09, 2022

As observers of the Human Rights Council, we have repeated and continue to repeat our concerns with these so-called efficiency measures. The so-called efficiency measures privilege convenience over the Council's effectiveness, which should concern all of us. The lack of general debates during the June sessions has severely impacted civil society participation. It is particularly true for feminist groups and groups that work on issues of gender and sexuality.

Uploaded on December 15, 2022

This report is submitted by REDJUAMUGEN, The PACT and SRI and the Sexual Rights Initiative (SRI). This report is the result of a consultation convened to contribute to the UPR in Guatemala, led and implemented by REDJUAMUGEN, was carried out through a multisectoral analysis. This identified the needs and demands of Guatemalan youth, guaranteeing the gender approach by investigating the current national situation in different sectors, forming a holistic analysis, then generating milestones to formulate recommendations for the country and the diverse Guatemalan youth.

Published on June 15, 2022

SRI Statement on the commemorative event on the occasion of the 50th session of the HRC.
The Human Rights Council will marked its 50th session through a high-level interactive discussion that provided stakeholders an opportunity to reflect on the achievements made and the lessons learned since its 1st session. The following is SRI's statement to this interactive discussion.

Uploaded on October 08, 2021

At some point there was hope that the Council would be a place where states would answer for their actions and where people could seek remedy for human rights violations - but that hope has faded over time. During this pandemic, the UN’s international cooperation mandate has given way to States’ and corporate interests. Barriers to entering multilateral spaces including denial of visas, ECOSOC status requirements, unsustainable cost of travel, lack of translation, lack of access for people with disabilities, technology access and safety issues, and so-called efficiency measures that restrict civil society participation, all take away the nuance and expertise that civil society brings in pursuit of social justice and equality. All of this is symbolized by the empty chairs throughout the UN.

Uploaded on October 08, 2021

During this pandemic, we have seen that the UN can change and create processes for better participation of all, including civil society. We have seen modalities evolve to allow for video statements and other remote modalities that had long been demanded by activists but were treated as impossible -- that is until States needed them too. But we have also seen the instrumentalization of the pandemic to restrict civil society space nationally and internationally, the UN’s budget crisis impact on its ability to fulfill its mandate, including with regards to civil society participation, delayed reports and other outcomes, and the drive for expediency leading to the renewal of ‘efficiency’ measures that obstruct rather than advance broad participation.

Published on March 29, 2017

The 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council took place from the 27th of February to the 24th of March 2017. Here is an overview of resolutions, panel, oral statements and side events related to sexual rights that took place during the session.

Published on December 20, 2016

‘Imagining a World Without Participation’: Mapping the History and Achievements of Civil Society

June 2017 thematic report to the UN Human Rights Council by the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association

Source: OHCHR

The space for civil society globally has shrunk dramatically over the last 10 years. In established democracies as well as in autocratic regimes and states in transition, laws and practices constraining freedoms of association and of peaceful assembly have flourished.

Published on March 31, 2015

During the 28th session of the UN Human Rights Council, the Sexual Rights Initiative (SRI) collaborated with national-level organizations and advocates to deliver oral statements regarding outcomes from the Universal Periodic Review ‘s (UPR) of Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, El Salvador and Madagascar. Responses were also prepared for Egypt and Iran but not delivered due to time limitations

Published on December 12, 2013

Human rights have surged to the forefront of the debate about what will succeed the Millennium Development Goals in 2015. As human rights and social justice organizations worldwide, we feel compelled to lay out some of the baseline implications of embedding human rights into the core of the sustainable development agenda this time around.