The United Kingdom is expected to release £2.9m to support human rights work in commonwealth member states.
According to a statement from the Commonwealth secretariat, the funds will support member states, regional organisations and national institutions to promote standards across the Commonwealth.
“The Commonwealth Secretariat will receive funding to provide technical human rights assistance to small states through the Commonwealth Small States Office (CSSO) in Geneva,” reads part of the statement.
Head of the Commonwealth’s Human Rights Unit, Karen McKenzie, said that this funding contribution will give impetus to the Commonwealth’s work with small states in Geneva, strengthening their voices in international human rights discourse.
“Small states currently face particular challenges in engaging with the Human Rights Council, the Universal Periodic Review and Treaty Bodies,” said McKenzie.
McKenzie further said,“This funding will therefore help to strengthen national institutions to engage with these international mechanisms; increase the number of small state champions on the Council; and place small state challenges at the centre of relevant debates. Ultimately, it will translate into better understanding and implementation of human rights promotion and protection for all citizens.”
the Commonwealth’s Head of Sport for Development and Peace, Oliver Dudfield, said, “The commitment of national human rights institutions to work with governments and sporting organisations in sport represents an important milestone in the promotion of human rights, both in and through sport.
“National human rights institutions and other accountability mechanisms offer a valuable asset for sporting stakeholders and public authorities to harness their efforts to address discrimination, inequality and non-accidental abuse in sport and, in doing so, maximise the potential for sport to contribute to transformative change in communities across the Commonwealth.”
He added, “It also reflects the unique ability of the Commonwealth to mobilise key actors, in this case bringing together the Commonwealth Secretariat, CFNHRI and Commonwealth Games Federation to advance our joint commitment to use sport as a means for promoting human rights.”