Human rights have played a key role in ending dictatorships in Latin
America, inspiring democracy, fostering social justice and generating a
more empowered and active citizenship. This ELLA Guide highlights the
key policies and practices that have made these advances possible. In
particular, it focuses on two aspects of the Latin American experience.
First, it explores the ways that states have implemented concrete
legislative and public policy actions at the national and regional level
to meet their obligations to protect and defend human rights. And
second, the Guide highlights the impact of the activism of a vibrant
civil society in using these mechanisms to promote and guarantee the
realisation of human rights, and in creating oversight mechanisms to
monitor states’ compliance with their human rights obligations. In
addition, the Guide points readers to key publications about Latin
America’s human rights experience and key organisations working on human
rights within the region. The policies, practices and lessons presented
in the Guide will be useful for policymakers, academics, human rights
defenders, civil society organisations (CSOs) and donors from other
regions interested in accessing the Latin American experience in
advancing human rights.
Building legislative and institutional frameworks inspired by adopting
human rights norms represents the first step in creating a solid
foundation to protect and defend human rights at the domestic level.
Latin America’s regional and national courts have established advanced
criteria in defining the scope and content of human rights and specific
state obligations to ensure their effective realisation.
Latin American countries have started to undertake administrative,
financial and even methodological changes to make human rights
Toledo, C. ELLA Guide: Human Rights in Latin America. ELLA, Practical Action Consulting, Lima, Peru (2013) 14 pp.