International Instruments

A Practical Guide for Civil Society - How to Follow UN Human Rights Recommendations

This Guide, issued by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), focuses on how civil society can follow up on recommendations of United Nations (UN) human rights mechanisms and mandates or bodies. Readers who are not already familiar with the main features of these mechanisms are invited to refer to OHCHR’s Handbook for civil society – Working with the United Nations human rights programmeand its Practical Guides for civil society. 

A Practical Guide for Civil Society - Civil Society Space and the United Nations Human Rights System

This is the sixth in Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights’ series of human rights practical guides for civil society, and should be seen within the context of ‘Widening the democratic space’, one of OHCHR’s current thematic priorities. This Guide highlights issues related to the work of civil society actors. It begins with a working definition of the terms ‘civil society’ and ‘civil society space’.

Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women

The Optional Protocol provides for a mechanism under which individuals or groups of individuals can file complaints with the CEDAW committee against states (that have ratified the optional protocol) for non-compliance with CEDAW. It was adopted by General Assembly resolution A/54/4 on 6 October 1999 and opened for signature on 10 December 1999. It entered into force on 22 December 2000.

ILO Convention Prohibiting Discrimination in Employment

Article 1(1) defines discrimination to include "(a) any distinction, exclusion or preference made on the basis of race, colour, sex, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin, which has the effect of nullifying or impairing equality of opportunity or treatment in employment or occupation; (b) such other distinction, exclusion or preference which has the effect of nullifying or impairing equality of opportunity or treatment in employment or occupation as may be determined by the Member concerned after consultation with representative employers' and workers