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Governments Should Consider Ways to Curb Global Plastics Production, Protect Rights

Chemical pollution has reached a dangerous level globally. According to a new study published in Environmental Science & Technology, substances introduced by human activities are interfering with the Earth’s natural systems and may have severe…
Two children stand above a river filled with garbage
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Protect Child Athletes, Ensure Justice for Abuse

Ahead of the Winter Olympics in Beijing next month and FIFA’s World Cup in Qatar later this year, the international spotlight is on rights abuses surrounding mega-sporting events. That makes 2022 a good year for sports federations worldwide to make…
Residents of the Centre Technique National in Croix-des-Bouquets play in a match on May 12, 2020. Earlier this year, survivors and family members accused Haitian Football Federation president, Yves Jean-Bart, of raping young female players at the center and subjecting them to other abuses. 
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Coastal Communities Bear Brunt of Climate Inaction

Earlier this month, parts of Papua New Guinea (PNG) experienced a surge in king tides that flooded communities and displaced approximately 53,000 people. King tides are the highest predicted tides of the year and are reaching higher and farther as…
Two boys in a canoe
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Ten Points to Celebrate from 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic has been devastating for children around the world. Earlier this month, UNICEF reported that the pandemic has plunged 100 million more children into poverty and rolled back virtually every measure of progress. This grim…
Climate activist Greta Thunberg, center, demonstrates with others in front of the Standard and Chartered Bank during a climate protest in London, England, October 29, 2021
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New Report Shows More Companies Could Help Produce mRNA Vaccines

The coordinator of the AccessIBSA project, which campaigns for access to medicines in India, Brazil, and South Africa, and a vaccine expert from the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF or Doctors Without Borders) Access Campaign published a report today…
Vaccine Lab Worker
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Needs of Marginalized Groups Should Inform Government Response

Canada’s western province of British Columbia is once again reeling from devastation linked to climate change. Following this summer’s deadly heat and rampant wildfires, record rainfall this month has triggered massive flooding, displacing more than…
A woman and children in boat leaving behind car with floodwaters up to the roof in the background.
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French and British Governments Need New Approach to Irregular Migration

At least 27 people, including a young girl, died in the frigid waters off France this week while trying to cross to the United Kingdom in an inflatable dinghy. The tragedy has intensified a dispute between British and French officials over who bears…
Activists and members of associations defending migrants' rights light candles in front of a banner reading "309 dead on the France UK border since 1999", during a gathering outside the port of Calais, northern France, November 25, 2021.
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Need to Protect Communities’ Rights in Importing Countries

Last week, the European Commission proposed new rules governing waste shipments from EU countries. The regulation could be good news for communities around the world impacted by European plastic waste exports. Currently, many EU governments ship…
A pile of garbage and waste next to a road
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Call for Visionary Leadership at COP26 to Face Climate Emergency

Brianna Fruean, a 23-year-old Samoan activist, put it simply when addressing world leaders at the Glasgow Climate Change Conference (COP26): “We are not drowning; we are fighting.” The youth climate movement is present and vocal in Glasgow, both…
Climate activist Greta Thunberg, center, demonstrates with others in front of the Standard and Chartered Bank during a climate protest in London, England, October 29, 2021
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Activists at COP26 Side Event Demand Recognition

“Disabled people won’t survive climate change if it isn’t in the plan for us to do so. And you can’t plan without us.” These were the words of Gabrielle Peters, a disabled policy analyst from Canada, during a side event at the United Nations…
Exterior of the COP26 Climate conference, showing the event banner.
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Government Should Not Dismiss, But Act on Reports of Inhumane Treatment

Three weeks after French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin dismissed a Human Rights Watch report on police abuse against migrants in northern France as “lies,” national officials are beginning to change their tone. Didier Leschi, head of the French…
A woman and two children stand in front of two police officers
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Governments Should Recognize Militaries as Greenhouse Gas Emitters

The armies, navies, and air forces of the world are significant greenhouse gas emitters and contribute to the climate crisis taking a growing toll on the lives, health, and livelihoods of people globally. With all eyes on Glasgow this week as world…
Soldiers in military tanks
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Closing Secondary Schools to Girls Causing Lasting Harm

“I want to go to school and become an independent woman who chooses and decides for her life,” 16-year-old Nasiba told me. “If I am educated, men wouldn’t dare to interfere but if I am not, they will decide my whole life for me.” She lives in Kabul…
Women demonstrate for their rights during a gathering for National Teachers Day in Kabul, Afghanistan, October 5, 2021.
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Rights Should be at Center of COP26 Climate Deliberations

As world leaders gather in Glasgow for the United Nations Climate Conference (COP26) this week, the stakes could not be higher. From burning forests to sweltering cities, parched farmlands to storm-battered coasts, the climate crisis is taking a…
A forest fire rages in Santo Antonio do Matupi, southern Amazonas state, Brazil, August 27, 2019.
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Others Remain in Prison Under Abusive Justice System

Nearly ten years after Ali al-Nimr was arrested by Saudi authorities in February 2012, he was finally released from prison this week. His mother tweeted a video showing their emotional reunion. But amid the relief and celebration, al-Nimr’s ordeal…
Ali al-Nimr was one of at least three Saudi men on death row for protest-related crimes committed when they were children.
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Safe Schools Conference in Abuja Shows Government Action Can Bring Progress

Nearly two decades ago, I first heard brave Afghan students and teachers describe armed attacks on their schools and threats to their lives as they struggled to learn and teach. Today, I am in Abuja, Nigeria, for the Fourth International Conference on…
Safe Schools Conference in Abuja Shows Progress Is Possible
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Investigate Fikile Ntshangase’s Murder and Hold Killers Responsible

One year ago Fikile Ntshangase, an environmental activist from South Africa, was gunned down in her home in Somkhele in KwaZulu-Natal province, after raising concerns about a coal mine in the area. No arrests have been made. Today, members of her…
Activists from mining communities protesting at the Pietermaritzburg High Court on August 24, 2018, KwaZulu-Natal © 2018 Rob Symons
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Rights Body Urges End to Early ‘Normalizing’ Interventions on Children

The Australian Human Rights Commission issued a report today analyzing the persistent practice of medically unnecessary non-consensual surgeries on children born with variations in their sex characteristics. The commission urged authorities to protect…
The Intersex flag
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Yegorov Protested Moscow’s Trash Pouring into His Community

Yesterday, a court in the city of Kolomna, Russia sentenced Viacheslav Yegorov to 15 months in prison for repeatedly taking part in peaceful protests in 2018 against the “import” of trash from Moscow. It is ironic that this sentence came less than a…
Vyacheslav Yegorov at Kolomna court, 2021
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Governments at COP26 Should Follow Suit

Less than three weeks ahead of the global COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow, two key United Nations human rights bodies in Geneva have taken action to strengthen the human rights framework around the climate crisis. The decisions are a clear…
Dry climate and wildfires create a residual layer of thick pollutants that cover the city of São Paulo, Brazil on September 17, 2020.