Human Rights Council

Human Rights Council

The Human Rights Council (HRC) is an inter-governmental body within the United Nations system, responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the globe.

Made up of 47 member states elected by the UN General Assembly, it was created on 15 March 2006 with the main purpose of addressing situations of human rights violations. It meets three times a year at the UN Office at Geneva.
At these meetings, the HRC considers reports prepared by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the UN Special Procedures, discusses various human rights issues, negotiates and passes resolutions on a range of thematic and

country-specific situations, and appoints experts to various human rights positions including the Special Procedures.

The HRC also oversees a number of subsidiary mechanisms, including the Universal Periodic Review, as well as the Advisory Committee - the Council’s “think tank” providing it with expertise and advice on thematic human rights issues - and the Complaint Procedure, which allows individuals and organisations to bring human rights violations to the attention of the Council.

The Human Rights Council also continues to work closely with the UN Special Procedures, established by the former Commission on Human Rights and now assumed by the Council.

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How ILGA engages with the Human Rights Council

ILGA gives visibility to and raises support for LGBTI issues globally at the
Human Rights Council. We reach this goal through a number of efforts, including:

  • compiling, reviewing and summarizing the various reports that touch on the human rights concerns of LGBTI persons in advance of each HRC session
  • enabling strategic discussions amongst civil society, States and other stakeholders in the run-up to and during each HRC session
  • providing expert guidance and mentoring to our member organisations on engagement with the HRC
  • conducting advocacy and outreach to governments in support of
    the human rights of LGBTI persons
  • supporting the integrity, transparency and accountability of the
    Human Rights Council more generally through
    • submitting individual or joint statements during general debates
    • engaging in interactive dialogues with the UN Special Procedures
    • organising awareness-raising SOGIESC-related side events, usually
      in the form of panel discussions on the margins of the HRC
    • working with human rights defenders to prepare and help deliver
      statements during the UPR adoption, for their respective countries.

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