Making human rights real: two Latin American experiences in the rights based approach to policymaking

Making human rights real: two Latin American experiences in the rights based approach to policymaking

 

Human rights are not mere discursive concepts on human dignity. These days, consensus dictates that governments who commit to human rights by ratifying international treaties are also required to implement specific domestic measures to fulfill their obligations.  In addition to law enforcement and accountability systems, one of the main tools governments can use to guarantee human rights are public policies. Accordingly, some governments in Latin America are taking steps to transform their administrative structures to comply with their human rights obligations. This Brief offers short case studies of the first two Latin American initiatives to integrate a rights based approach in public policies.  It analyses the experience of the Government of Mexico City, which has made great strides in implementing the approach, and the case of Argentina, an incipient but promising process to guarantee the realisation of human rights. Though it is too early in both cases to see an impact on human rights per se, there are important outcomes in terms of implementing the process itself, outcomes that are significant given the difficulty of enacting such fundamental change. In describing these successes and the contextual factors underpinning them, lessons can be drawn that might be useful for other developing countries considering implementing a Rights Based Approach to address their own human rights challenges.

  1. How good is this research?

    Assessing the quality of research can be a tricky business. This blog from our editor offers some tools and tips.