A report from Margaret Sekaggya, the UN Special Rapporteur for human rights defenders, has concluded that human rights advocates in developing countries are “harassed, stigmatized, and criminalized for doing their work.” While these advocates aim to protect the rights of workers involved in large-scale projects such as dams and roads, the developers view such advocacy as unwarranted interference. Many corporations have taken harmful action against these advocates, including physical attacks and death threats.
Ms. Sekaggya calls for increased transparency in these projects, and therefore demands that human rights advocates have the ability to report human rights violations without fear of reprisal. In addition to transparency, Ms. Sekaggya calls for a rights-based approach to these projects, which would include non-discriminatory practices from employers.
For access to Sekaggya’s UN webpage, click here.