New Tactics Blog
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by Ross Nervig, CVT marketing & communications specialist
New Tactics in Human Rights, a program of the Center for Victims of Torture, has primarily focused its work on supporting human rights activists outside the U.S. over the past sixteen years. However, the changing political climate in the U.S. is inspiring new advocacy efforts to protect and promote rights. To be as effective as possible in 2017 and beyond, we believe it is critical that activists focus on building their strategic and tactical capacity.
And we at New Tactics are ready to help.
Utilizing the New Tactics in Human Rights framework, CVT staff continue to look for ways to accompany and empower clients as they struggle with the immense questions about safety, their rights and how to feel secure in an uncertain environment. The article 'Fielding Difficult Questions about Clients’ Human Rights' explores responses to frequent rights-related questions, as well as tools for empowering clients.
Struggling to identify where you can make an impact? For so many, the desire to make positive changes around human rights can be overshadowed by the overwhelming sense that the issues are too large, too complex and too distant to be able to actually make a difference. We ask: who am I to try to change things? You are a community member, a citizen, a neighbor, a family member and a friend. Around all of us are networks of individuals with whom we interact on a daily basis. We can all take steps toward a more inclusive, positive and understanding world by interacting with those we know best.
Below are five examples of tactics from the New Tactics in Human Rights tactic database that have been used to change the dialogue, breed inclusiveness and provide protection and open spaces for at-risk groups in communities. These and other tactics can be adapted and applied locally, and they are transferable: what works on a seemingly unrelated issue halfway across the world can provide inspiration and creativity for your local action.
Data 4 Change is a workshop where human rights organisations and journalists are paired up with researchers, designers, and developers to create data visualisations that can help change the world. The need for the workshop was first realized when organizers learned that human rights organisations in the MENA region collect primary data, and had a strong desire to visualise their research, but lacked the skills and access to professionals to do so.
Neighbors are important. I learned that growing up on a farm in rural North Dakota near the border with Manitoba. And I learned that while living in the tiny landlocked country of Armenia. These experiences, among others, have piqued my interest in what it means to be a good neighbor. As a result, I’ve become increasingly interested in Mexico, our neighbor to the south, and with whom the U.S. has a complicated, interdependent, and ever-evolving relationship.