The paper 'Issues of Non-Governmental Organisations" is a great example of business coursework. The term non-governmental organisation (NGO) refers to an organisation that is legally constituted, established by natural or legal persons and operates independently from any government (Donnelly, 2003). In their operations, NGOs do not focus on making a profit. In cases where they are partially or fully funded by governments, they maintain their non-governmental status. Precisely, they avoid government influence in their decisions by excluding governmental representatives in their memberships. Often, this term is given to organisations that focus on social, economic and political issues but with no political interests (Goodale, 2008). There is a huge number of NGOs operating at local, national, regional and international levels.
These organisations focus on different but specific social, economic and political issues. This paper examines seven NGOs that operate at an international level focus on issues related to human rights, namely: Amnesty International, Human Rights Foundation, Human Rights Watch, World Organisation Against Torture, Journalists for Human Rights, Centre of Housing Rights and Evictions and Freedom House. The paper analyses the different approaches taken by these organisations to deal with issues related to human rights.
Out of these organisations, it has been established that Amnesty International, Centre of Housing Rights and Evictions and Human Rights Watch has had the most influence in terms of both public opinion and government policy on the issue of human rights. Amnesty International This is one of the most populous NGOs with over 3 million members globally. It was founded in 1961 in London. The objective of the organisation is to draw attention to abuses of human rights and to compel governments, non-governmental bodies and private individuals to comply with international laws and standards (Amnesty International, 2012).
It achieves this by mobilising public opinion to put pressure on individuals, governments and non-governmental organisations that perpetrate or let the abuse of human rights to take place. Further, Amnesty International conducts research on abuses of human rights and uses the findings to generate actions that help to prevent grave abuses. Information about human rights abuses is collected from victims, local human rights activists, observing trials, and from the media. Sometimes, the organisation sends officials to countries to make enquiries related to human rights abuses (Amnesty International, 2012). The organisation also makes sure that justice is accorded to those who are found to be victims of human rights abuse.
It protects the rights of prisoners by ensuring that prison conditions meet international human rights standards and ensuring that the prisoners are given prompt and fair trials. It helps to fight impunity from justice systems both at national and international levels. Amnesty International focuses on six key areas namely ending torture, human dignity protection, the abolition of the death penalty, and protection of the rights of children, women, indigenous groups and minorities.
This explains the fact that Amnesty International is one of the most influential NGOs in mobilising the public against acts of human rights violence. According to the organisation’ s website, Amnesty International (2012), the organisation has the longest history in the field of international human rights. It was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1977 for its successful campaign against torture in various regions in the world (Lauren, 2011).
Amnesty International (2012). “About Amnesty International”. Retrieved 13 May 2012 from, https://www.amnesty.org/en/who-we-are/about-amnesty-internationals
COHRE (2007). “Submission to the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights”. Retrieved 13 May 2012 from, http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cescr/docs/info-ngos/cohrekenya39.pdf
Donnelly, J. (2003). Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. New York: Cornell University Press.
Goodale, M. (2008). Human Rights: An Anthropological Reader. West Sussex: Blackwell Publishing.
Human Rights Foundation (2012). “Human Rights Foundation Mission”. Retrieved 13 May 2012 from http://www.thehrf.org/mission.php
Human Rights Watch (2011). “Our history”. Retrieved 13 May 2012 from http://www.hrw.org/en/node/75134
Journalists for Human Rights (2009). “Success stories”. Retrieved 13 May 2012 from http://www.jhr.ca/en/index.php
Lauren, P. G. (2011). The Evolution of International Human Rights: Visions Seen, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
Mutua, M. (2009). Human Rights NGOs in East Africa: Political and Normative Tensions. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
World Organisation Against Torture (2009). “Global network fighting against torture and other human rights violations.” Retrieved 13 May 2012 from http://www.omct.org/