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Useful Information

Calendar of Events

Publications

OHCHR report 2013 OHCHR Report 2013
OHCHR Management Plan 2014-2017 OHCHR Management Plan 2014-2017
Brochure: Human Rights in action Human Rights in Action (PDF)
Working with the United Nations Human Rights Programme: A Handbook for Civil Society A Handbook for Civil Society (PDF)

OHCHR in Mexico (2008-2009)


Human rights context

 
The office in Mexico was established in 2002 as part of a technical cooperation agreement with the Government. Since the office was established, the Government has shown greater political will towards implementing the observations and recommendations of international human rights mechanisms within both the universal and the regional systems. The Government has extended a standing invitation to special procedures. Most recently, the Special Rapporteur on violence against women visited the country in 2005 and the Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography visited in 2007. Some actions have been taken to guarantee and protect human rights, such as the elimination of the death penalty.

However, Mexico still faces important challenges with regard to ensuring that its national legislation complies with international human rights standards; reducing the gap between the principles enshrined in the human rights treaties signed and ratified by Mexico and the reality on the ground; dismantling the structural causes of human rights violations related to poverty, inequality, discrimination and impunity, particularly with regard to women, children, indigenous peoples, migrants, the elderly and those with disabilities; promoting a culture of respect for human rights; addressing the issues of public security, economic, social and cultural rights, criminal justice, migration, the rights of indigenous peoples, violence against women and freedom of expression; and constructing democratic mechanisms through which citizens can participate in formulating public policy, including referenda, plebiscites and popular initiatives.

 

Achievements

 
Two of the most significant actions resulting from the Technical Cooperation Agreement between OHCHR and the Government were the 2003 National Diagnostic of the Human Rights Situation in Mexico, known for its independence, openness and transparency, and the National Human Rights Programme (NHRP) that resulted from this process. Both are unprecedented exercises that have made a solid contribution in establishing a State policy based on human rights.

During the past biennium, the Office established close relations with the Federal Congress in order to promote constitutional reform concerning human rights and the harmonization of national legislation with international human rights standards. The Office also established agreements with the Supreme Court of Justice,which has been open to receiving advice and counsel from OHCHR regarding key human rights issues. The Office has also replicated the successful experience of the National Diagnosis and NHRP at state and local levels where knowledge and implementation of international human rights standards is weak.

In order to increase knowledge about human rights, reports and documents on key issues were disseminated throughout the country, and a capacity-building strategy targeting Government and civil society at federal and state levels was launched. The Office also started training staff of the UN Country Team so that the Team can begin implementing programmes and activities with a human rights-based approach. The Office also provided legal advice and facilitated meetings between victims of human rights violations and special procedures mandate-holders when they visited Mexico.

Priorities

 
The Office will continue its work with the Federal Congress in an effort to help pass constitutional reform in human rights and increase the number of laws approved and reformed that meet human rights standards. It will also work with the Supreme Court of Justice in incorporating international human rights standards in their jurisprudence and rulings.

At the federal level, the Office will help formulate a new National Human Rights Action Plan that draws on the methodology and core points of the previous plan and guarantees active participation by civil society and academic institutions. In order to guarantee the implementation of the actions and policies contemplated in the plan, the Office will help establish clear monitoring mechanisms. It will also work with federal secretariats that have shown interest in integrating a human rights perspective into their plans and programmes, particularly those that address the issues of discrimination and poverty in a holistic manner.

On the state level, the National Diagnosis and NHRP will be replicated in six more states. Coordinating committees, composed of representatives from the executive, legislative and judicial powers, the state human rights commission, public and private universities and from civil society, will direct the exercise.

Working with the Government, civil society and academic institutions, the Office will establish a set of objective indicators to measure the fulfilment of Mexico’s human rights obligations. OHCHR will also convene a group of experts from civil society and academic institutions to formulate an independent, annual report of the human rights situation in Mexico, in accordance with recommendation 31 of the National Human Rights Diagnostic. A planned human rights documentation centre, based in a university in Mexico City, will obtain local, state, national and international human rights publications and make them available in a single location. OHCHR will also train law professors in international human rights law with the aim of creating a network that can multiply these trainings on state and federal levels. It will produce and distribute human rights materials, and ensure that information on human rights is disseminated through print, audio and visual media. 

Contact Information

Headquarters

Field Operations and Technical Cooperation Division
Geneva, Switzerland

Americas Section
Tel. + 41 22 928 9167
Geneva, Switzerland

Field

Head of the Office
(52 55) 5061 6350
Mexico D.F., Mexico
Email: oacnudh@hchr.org.mx

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