Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition, Resources, Advocacy, Support


Defending Women - Defending Rights






For human rights defenders seeking urgent assistance, click here

The System of Solidarity and Support (SOS) is an initiative of The International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net), a collaborative initiative of groups and individuals from around the world working to secure economic and social justice through human rights.

A flexible vehicle to harness the collective voices and resources of the Network, the SOS is comprised primarily of a rapid response system that coordinates actions between and amongst members of the Network and other partners to prevent serious human rights violations from occurring and increase protection for human rights defenders under threat. The support that is available by means of ESCR-Net's SOS has emerged from collective work across the Network's membership in an effort to operationalize international solidarity in the face of injustices or serious threats.

Primarily, ESCR-Net serves as a platform for members to initiate solidarity actions by means of sign-on letters, petition campaigns or other vehicles. The Network has historically done this by means of its Discussion Groups, website and other media. The present site is intended to bolster the Network’s capacity, by facilitating the rapid action of a wide number of members and supporters of the Network in response to serious threats against human rights defenders or imminent rights violations.

At times, ESCR-Net also generates Urgent Action Appeals in cases of imminent human rights violations or situations where members are under threat. Collective appeals generated on behalf of the Network’s membership follow a series of established Guidelines and protocols which have developed over recent years. See here for examples of recent collective appeals issued by the Network.

ESCR-Net also works to build the capacity of its members and partners to bolster their personal and organizational security, access complaints mechanisms, connect with specialized advice, access resources and tools and identify possible funding resources for security measures and legal defense. See here for more resources to promote and bolster the security and protection of human rights defenders.