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Human Rights Monitoring Associate - Escazu

Mexico City

  • Organization: UNV - United Nations Volunteers
  • Location: Mexico City
  • Grade: Level not specified - Level not specified
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Human Rights
    • Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Closing Date: Closed

Details

Mission and objectives

OHCHR’s office in Mexico works to ensure that institutions, Government authorities, and the United Nations Country Team have adequate information, understanding, and skills to identify human rights concerns and to develop measures to address them effectively. OHCHR-Mexico also works to ensure that civil society and human rights victims have increased awareness of human rights standards and mechanisms. Main activities are focused on technical cooperation and legal advice on harmonization of legislation, development of indicators on human rights, support the elaboration of public policies with human rights based approach, follow-up the international recommendations, gender and human rights, amongst other issues, and monitoring of human rights situation throughout the country, with emphasis on grave human rights violations (such as enforced disappearances and torture) as well as the situation of human rights defenders and journalists and the right of indigenous peoples to prior consultation. OHCHR-Mexico is divided into several functional units: Administration, Grave Human Rights Violations, Gender and ESCR, Democratic Space, Vulnerable Groups, Indicators and Public Communications. The UNV would be part of the Democratic Space Unit, which currently consists of a coordinator (international staff) and an international UNV. The Democratic Space Unit personally receives complaints of alleged human rights violations and gives legal orientation to victims, particularly human rights defenders, and journalists. The Democratic Space Unit also participates in field missions to follow up cases of alleged human rights violations, meeting with victims, family members of victims, local NGO´s and government authorities

Context

The UN Youth Volunteer will be part of the Gender and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Unit, which currently consists of a coordinator and two staff members. The Gender and ESCR Unit personally gives legal orientation to victims, particularly human rights defenders who defend the environment. The Gender and ESCR Unit also participates in field missions to follow up on cases of alleged human rights abuses, meeting with victims, family members of victims, local NGOs, and government authorities. The Gender and ESCR Unit members collaborate in the activities of the task forces created in the Office around the main issues, such as torture, disappearances, and the right of indigenous people to prior consultation, among others. In addition, the Gender and ESCR Unit prepares mission reports and reports for UN Special Procedures, treaty bodies, and headquarters in Geneva. The Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters in Latin America and the Caribbean (Escazu Agreement) is the first to include provisions for human rights defenders in environmental matters, including measures to prevent, investigate, and punish attacks, threats or intimidations against them, but also to guarantee the rights of access to environmental information, public participation in the environmental decision-making process and access to justice in environmental matters. The agreement entered into force in Mexico in 2021 and OHCHR-Mexico is monitoring cases and actions related to the established rights and providing technical assistance to multiple stakeholders to advance their effective implementation in linkage with other interdependent rights such as economic, social and cultural rights, the rights of indigenous peoples and displaced persons. According to OHCHR Mexico's register of killings and disappeared human rights defenders between 2019 and 2023, the defenders who suffer the most aggression are those who defend the environment and territory. In its latest report, the Mexican Center for Environmental Law (CEMDA) reported that aggressions against people and communities defending the environment and territories increased 144.5% between 2021 and 2022, mainly in the sectors of megaprojects and mines. At the same time, civil society organizations, particularly of women defenders, have pointed out challenges to implementing the agreement, such as the weakening of key institutions and the absence of specific strategies to address the lack of information, participation, and environmental justice for women.

Task description

Under the direct supervision of the Coordinator of the Gender and ESCR Unit, the UN Youth Volunteer will undertake the following tasks: • Contribute to research and collect information pertaining to human rights issues, particularly related to the Escazu Agreement and environmental topics, through monitoring human rights situations at the field level and from a variety of data sources (e.g. communications, publications, the press) to keep abreast of issues/events and provide up to date information; • Participate in interviews with human rights victims, particularly human rights defenders in environmental matters, relevant authorities and civil society organizations as part of the documentation of cases; • Assist in the analysis of information regarding substantive matters in the field of human rights, particularly related to journalists and human rights defenders in environmental matters, the rights of access to environmental information, public participation in the environmental decision-making process, access to justice in environmental matters, and recommend actions to be taken; • Assist in drafting inputs for reports, communications for UN reports and correspondence relating to human rights matters, particularly related to human rights defenders in environmental matters; • Contribute with inputs for meetings with relevant authorities to assist in strengthening their capacity for the protection and promotion of environmental human rights and the implementation of the Escazu Agreement; • Support in other tasks as required. Results/expected outputs • Provision of monitoring and analysis of human rights situations and individual cases of human rights violations. • Analytical mission reports for all field missions. • Accurate new and updated cases in the human rights database. • Contribution to communications on cases or human rights situations. • The development of capacity through coaching, mentoring and formal on-the-job training, when working with (including supervising) national staff or (non-) governmental counterparts, including Implementing Partners (IPs). • Age, Gender, and Diversity (AGD) perspective is systematically applied, integrated, and documented in all activities throughout the assignment. • A final statement of achievements towards volunteerism for peace and development during the assignment, such as reporting on the number of volunteers mobilized, activities participated in, and capacities developed.

This vacancy is now closed.
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