Write for Rights 2020

December 10th marks Human Rights Day, the day celebrating the United Nation’s proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. In honour of this day, Amnesty International holds a letter writing blitz known as Write for Rights. The organization highlights ten individuals or communities who are at high risk of human rights abuse. Hundreds of thousands of people then write letters to government officials on behalf of these individuals. To learn more about the event or read the 2020 cases click here.

The Write for Rights campaign is very successful. Last year over 6.6 MILLION letters, emails, and actions were sent. Seventy percent of the cases received positive results. The following are the good news stories from 2019 Write for Rights:

1 million + actions – Yasaman Aryani was sentenced to 16 years in prison for violating forced veil laws in Iran. The Appeals Court reduced her sentence to 5.5 years.

765,000 appeals – Magai Matiop Ngong from South Sudan had his death sentenced cancelled.

528,000 actions – Marinel Sumook Ubaldo asked the Filipino government to assist survivors following the destruction from Typhoon Yolanda in Matarinao. The government is listening to their needs.

400,000 actions – Nasu Abdulaziz was shot when residents in his community, Otodo Gbame, Nigeria were evicted and their homes bulldozed. Nasu survived and asked authorities to secure their right to a home. There is now an ongoing dialogue between his community and the government regarding a resettlement program

400,000 appeals – For decades people of the Grassy Narrows First Nations suffered mercury poisoning at the hands of commercial mercury dumping in the 1960s. The federal government committed $19.5 million for new mercury treatment care facility and made up to $200 million dollars available over the next five years to assist people.

In Belarus, Emil Ostrovko had his sentence reduced from eight to six years. He was beaten by police and accused of distributing drugs.

Jose Adrian, a teenage with an undiagnosed disability, was arbitrarily arrested and beaten by Mexican police in 2016. He has been compensated with a scholarship and psychological treatment.

Letter writing works! Please consider writing a letter (or more) this week!

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