December 10th of 2011, Human Rights Day, marks the third anniversary of the adoption of the Optional Protocol to International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights at the UN general Assembly.
The NGO Coalition for an OP-ICESCR in collaboration with its members, partners and allies around the world takes this opportunity to reiterate the call for ratification of this mechanism to all countries.
So far five countries have become parties to the Protocol - Spain, Argentina, Mongolia, El Salvador and Ecuador. We need five more ratifications for it to enter into force and many more to ensure it lives up to its potential. This Protocol is a key instrument in achieving greater social justice and universal human rights protection. It will close a gap in international human rights law and ensure access to justice to victims of economic, social and cultural rights violations at the international level and strengthen national systems to do the same.
Today we are launching a Declaration signed by eminent jurists and human rights experts supporting and urging early ratification of the Optional Protocol. In addition, below is a model press release for use with your State and national media. Please disseminate both widely. The Declaration will remain open throughout 2012 for endorsements.
Spread the word! Join us in this effort and encourage relevant prominent individuals in your own country to add their support to your national ratification campaign and sign the Declaration.