US Human Rights Network Blog

US Human Rights Network Blog



Next steps in advocacy leading up to the UPR

Oct 30, 2019

Next week on Wednesday, November 6, the US Human Rights Network will facilitate our 7th webinar in the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) webinar series. It will be our first webinar since stakeholder reports were submitted to the United Nations on October 3. Register for the webinar here.

The USHRN submitted our Executive Summary stakeholder report this month, which was informed by 34 reports written by member and partner organizations, individuals, and Working Groups. The reports covered a wide range of topics including, human rights violations of sex workers; the consequences of Islamophobia; the abuse of asylum seekers; abortion rights, and many more. The full list of reports submitted, including reports submitted after the USHRN deadline which did not make it into our Executive Summary but which were nevertheless submitted to the United Nations, is available here. Full reports including the USHRN Executive Summary are available for download. 

Thank you to our members, partners, and Working Groups, who worked diligently alongside their daily activism and organizing to submit their stakeholder reports to USHRN and to the United Nations. Grassroots voices are essential to ensuring that the UPR process is grounded in the reality of human rights violations and resistance in the United States. Your reports will inform the United Nations member states’ review of the US human rights record which will take place in May 2020. 

Now that reports are in, we are entering an important period of advocacy leading up to the review in May. The primary goals of upcoming advocacy efforts are to raise awareness of the upcoming review, the content of the reports submitted, and ongoing human rights violations occurring on the ground in the US; and to influence the US government, UN permanent missions, and embassies who may play key roles in questioning and holding the US accountable during the review process. 

Key advocacy efforts will center around the following:

  1. Events in New York City and Washington D.C. with the intent to engage with permanent missions and embassies; events will cover civil and political issues, and economic, social, and cultural issues. The events will be organized and led by the USHRN UPR Task Force. We look forward to keeping you updated and inviting you to participate. Please join our next UPR Webinar on November 6 for information on drafting a 1-2 page summary of your report to present to permanent missions and embassies. You are welcome to create a 1-2 pager, even if you were unable to submit a full stakeholder report. 
  2. Public education and creative campaigns; the USHRN Coordinating Center initiate an online social media education campaign to raise awareness about the upcoming review and to uplift the content of the reports you submitted. We’ll also be launching a photo competition, which members and non-members alike are welcome to participate in, even or especially if you did not submit a report. This is an important time to tell your story and to speak truth to power. We will share the photo submissions at events in New York City, Washington D.C., and Geneva. Please watch for more information on the launch of the competition.
  3. Resources for participating in the review in Geneva; as we relaunch our UPR webinar series, we will be covering the two points of advocacy efforts listed above, as well as providing education and resources for people who plan to travel to Geneva for the review in May. We will also be organizing a fundraising effort to raise funds for activists and organizers from around the country in order to contribute to your travel funds. If you would like us to share your fundraising appeal with our members, please contact Communications Director Whitney Yang ( for more information on how to get involved in this project. 

Please join the next UPR webinar on November 6 to learn more about upcoming advocacy and visit for up-to-date information about the UPR. We look forward to continuing our engagement and launching these important activities this winter.