A Case Study: Ratifying the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights in Uruguay
The Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (OP-ICESCR) is a key human rights treaty that strengthens access to justice in relation to people’s economic, social and cultural rights. It establishes an international complaints mechanism that allows individuals who have exhausted all attempt at remedy within their own countries, to claim before the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) that their rights under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) have been violated, in order to get redress. The OP-ICESCR corrected the historical imbalance between the protection of civil and political rights, on the one hand, and economic, social, and cultural rights, on the other. As such, it is an important confirmation of the equality, interdependence, and indivisibility of all human rights, and an important tool to strengthen access to justice globally.
National, regional and international mobilization efforts of civil society – facilitated in large part by the NGO Coalition for the OP-ICESCR – played a decisive role in the discussion, adoption and ratification of this treaty.
This factsheet examines the ratification of the OP-ICESCR by Uruguay and outlines the advocacy strategies adopted by civil society - of particular significance given that the efforts that led to this 10th ratification of the OP-ICESCR triggered the entry into force of this treaty.
See the factsheet here.