The report aims to capture the voices and perspectives of civil society participants at the Forum, including on key areas to enhance the impact of efforts made to promote the fight against torture and ill-treatment across the world. (As such its content is the sole responsibility of HRDN and does not necessarily reflect the views of the European External Service, nor of the European Commission services).
The present report was prepared pursuant to Human Rights Council resolutions 5/1 and 16/21, taking into consideration the periodicity of the universal periodic review. It is a summary of 53 stakeholders' submissions to the universal periodic review, presented in a summarized manner owing to word-limit constraints.
Human rights and development are often perceived as different domains of intervention. Whereas civil and political rights are perceived to relate to the respect and protection of human dignity against violent onslaught (torture, restrictions of political rights, extra-judicial killings, war and conflict), development is often viewed as focusing on the creation of possibilities (labour, sanitation, industry, agriculture).
In this paper, which is a collaborative project between Balay and Dignity, we focus on the importance of social work in human rights projects. As we have worked together, we have realized that social work is an indispensable part of human rights work because it addresses the relations between victims, perpetrators and interventions in a holistic manner. We also know that people who are included socially are less likely to be targeted violently and if they are, they cope better with the traumatic events. At the same time, social works is often an invisible discipline and profession, squeezed, as we show below, between other ‘legitimate’ professions (medical, legal and psychotherapeutic for example) on the one hand and people who simply ‘help’ others in a less professional way on the other. In this paper we insist that social work is a profession, that it is indispensable and that human rights work must place greater trust and resources in developing appropriate social works models. This paper is our small contribution to this larger advocacy agenda.