Mother Earth and Resource Extraction: Women Defending Land and Water

Rights and Protections of Defenders

Acceder a los recursos en español sobre los derechos y protecciones de lxs defensorxs.

Please note that link descriptions are taken from their original source.

The Advocates for Human Rights | Resources for Human Rights Defenders
A Human Rights Defender (HRD) is a person or group that works on the front lines to promote and protect human rights. Because Human Rights Defenders are directly challenging human rights abuses by governments and private parties, their own rights can be endangered. This resource sheet is designed specifically for Human Rights Defenders, providing information about safety and security, emergency assistance for at-risk HRDs, and advocacy tools.

The Bernard and Audre Rapoport Center for Human Rights’ Bibliography on Natural Resource Governance, Inequality, and Human Rights
This bibliography has been prepared by the Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice at the University of Texas School of Law as part of a larger project on the relationship between natural resource governance, inequality and human rights.

CIVICUS. “Civil Society Support Mechanisms: A Directory.”
There is a vast network of organisations and mechanisms that support human rights groups in general, and many that support civil society in particular. In order to strengthen and promote their work, civil society organisations, human rights defenders, journalists, activists and others rely on alliances between each other, the sharing of best practices and lessons learned, and constructive engagement with governments and intergovernmental institutions. These networks foster greater connections between ground-level issues and global-level processes and amplify the voices of civil society in global decision making. This solidarity is especially critical for civil society when it is under threat or attack.

EDLC | Resource Directory for Environmental Defenders
EDLC has compiled these resources to assist environmental defenders facing threats or legal actions, and welcomes inquiries, especially concerning legal assistance.

Front Line Defenders
Front Line Defenders was founded in Dublin in 2001 with the specific aim of protecting human rights defenders at risk (HRDs), people who work, non-violently, for any or all of the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Front Line Defenders addresses the protection needs identified by HRDs themselves.

Global Partners Digital. 2016. “Travel Guide to the Digital World: Cybersecurity Policy for Human Rights Defenders.”
When it comes to cybersecurity, it is increasingly evident that human rights defenders do not, on the whole, have this capacity. In fact, there is not even a shared understanding of what cybersecurity is. Depending on who you talk to, and in what forum, cybersecurity can extend to issues as diverse as security protocols in government databases and the international norms applicable to cyber-attacks during armed conflicts.

Global Partners Digital. 2018. “Travel Guide to the Digital World: Data Protection for Human Rights Defenders.”
The aim of this guide is to equip human rights defenders with the information they need to be able to engage with, advocate to, and inform policymakers on data protection.

Human Rights First | Resources for Human Rights Defenders
Human Rights First maintains a list of resources for human rights defenders who are facing security threats because of their work. This compilation includes information about emergency funds, fellowships, human rights awards, training opportunities, and guidelines for embassies and missions on the protection of human rights defenders.

International Labor Organization (ILO) | C169 - Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention, 1989 (No. 169)
 Please note Canada is not a signatory. This only applies to some Latin American countries at the moment.  

Open Briefing
Multilingual tools, apps and guides to strengthen the individual and collective safety and resilience of civil society organisations and civic actors around the world.

RaReNet and CiviCERT | The Digital First Aid Kit
The Digital First Aid Kit is a free resource to help rapid responders, digital security trainers, and tech-savvy activists to better protect themselves and the communities they support against the most common types of digital emergencies. It can also be used by activists, human rights defenders, bloggers, journalists or media activists who want to learn more about how they can protect themselves and support others. If you or someone you are assisting is experiencing a digital emergency, the Digital First Aid Kit will guide you in diagnosing the issues you are facing and refer you to support providers for further help if needed.

Toolkit for Latin American Women Human Rights Defenders Working on Land and Environmental Issues
There are a range of measures that these women human rights defenders (WHRDs) can take to increase their protection. As well as capacity-building in security techniques and access to support in cases of emergency, WHRDs have identified other, no less important, strategies for protection, such as the ability to carry out advocacy, building alliances and support networks, as well as finding reliable funding sources and learning self-care techniques. All of these – and others - can help to ensure that WHRDs can work in a secure environment, and in groups and organisations which are sustainable. This toolkit is intended as an easy, accessible guide to some of the many resources on these subjects that exist, but which WHRDs working land and environmental rights may not be aware of. It is aimed at WHRDs, whether they are part of all-women organisations, mixed, or acting as individuals.

United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 
The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) was adopted by the General Assembly on Thursday, 13 September 2007, by a majority of 144 states in favour, 4 votes against (Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States) and 11 abstentions (Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burundi, Colombia, Georgia, Kenya, Nigeria, Russian Federation, Samoa and Ukraine).

United Nations Environmental Rights Initiative

UN Environment supports the upholding of environmental rights through The Environmental Rights Initiative; which is a coalition of state and non-state actors united to promote, protect, and respect environmental rights.

United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders
Resources and tools for human rights defenders.

Voices at Risk: Canada’s Guidelines on Supporting Human Rights Defenders
Canada’s Guidelines on Supporting Human Rights Defenders (the Guidelines) is a clear statement of Canada’s commitment to supporting the vital work of human rights defenders. The Guidelines outline Canada’s approach and offer practical advice for officials at Canadian missions abroad and at Headquarters to promote respect for and support human rights defenders. Missions should do their utmost to implement these Guidelines, recognizing that each approach should be tailored to local contexts and circumstances, and respond to the specific needs of individual human rights defenders. Section 4 of these Guidelines provides detailed guidance for Canada’s diplomatic missions.


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