The Equal Rights Trust advocates for improvements to equality laws, policies and practices so they can be brought into line with international standards. 

Creating Major Advocacy Tools 

Boy in South Kardofan, Sudan We publish powerful tools such as our comprehensive country and thematic reports which are used by the Trust and others working to advancing equality to advocate at national, regional and international levels. 
For example, our report In Search of Confluence: Addressing Discrimination and Inequality in Sudan which argues that inequality is the root cause of the past and current conflict in Sudan, has been broadly accepted by the international community. The UN Human Rights Committee, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the Committee on Economic Social and Cultural Rights have endorsed its findings and recommendations, particularly in respect to inter-ethnic relations, sexual violence in conflict and the adoption of comprehensive equality law. 

International Advocacy 

The Trust presents its research at the UN in GenevaOur international advocacy uses procedures to subject states to scrutiny. In order to do this effectively we make regular submissions to the Human Rights Council and to UN Treaty Bodies, providing evidence on patterns of discrimination and an analysis of equality laws and policies in different countries. 

Our submissions have proved effective in influencing these bodies to ask questions and make recommendations to states, helping to increase the scrutiny of measures which advance equality. 

Each year we make around 20 - 25 submissions relating to equality on countries ranging from Azerbaijan to the United Kingdom

National Advocacy

Co-Director of the Trust, Jim Fitzgerald presents findings from the Trust's major report addressing discrimination in MoldovaAt the domestic level, we engage directly with national governments and parliaments to promote improved legal and policy frameworks related to equality. 

In 2014, our sustained advocacy in Ukraine contributed to the adoption of a law which provided LGBT individuals with the chance to stand up to discrimination in employment. 

In November 2015, in collaboration with our partner in Jordan, we held a highly successful public event on the administrative detention of female victims of domestic violence held in “protective custody”, which was attended by civil society, parliamentarians and those working in the detention system. Two weeks later, it was announced that the Council of Ministers had approved the building of shelters for women at risk of violence. 

Building Advocacy Movements

We strengthen civil society movements working to combat discrimination and promote equality. We support the establishment of advocacy coalitions. And we help to develop and implement advocacy Equality activists being trained in Croatiastrategies in a wide range of countries. 

In Kenya, we successfully established a coalition of over 60 organisations to campaign for legal reform on equality. We provided training, facilitated an expert working group and supported engagement with the government. This work laid the foundations for the establishment of a national human rights institution focused on combatting all forms of discrimination. 

In Croatia, we established the Croatia Equality Forum, providing a platform for civil society organisations to engage with the government’s legal reform process and to secure amendments to laws such as the Labour Act and the Family Act.