241 Works

Undeniable Atrocities: Confronting Crimes against Humanity in Mexico

Eric A. Witte
There is a “reasonable basis” to believe that both Mexican government forces and the Zetas drug cartel have committed crimes against humanity against civilians over the past decade, according to this report from the Open Society Justice Initiative and five Mexican partners. The report, Undeniable Atrocities: Confronting Crimes against Humanity in Mexico, also accuses successive governments of almost completely failing to ensure accountability for atrocity crimes, due primarily to political obstruction. It calls on Mexico...

White Working Class Communities in Stockholm

Tobias Hübinette & Charlotte Hyltén-Cavallius
This report is part of a six-city research series, Europe’s White Working Class Communities, which examines the realities of people from majority populations in Aarhus, Amsterdam, Berlin, Lyon, Manchester, and Stockholm. White Working Class Communities in Stockholm explores the experiences and concerns of majority Swedes in Greater Stockholm, more specifically in the municipality of Southern Botkyrka. Botkyrka is the fifth-largest municipality in Greater Stockholm, with a history of migration stretching back to at least the...

White Working Class Communities in Berlin

Andreas Hieronymus & Dušan Ugrina
This report is part of a six-city research series, Europe’s White Working Class Communities, which examines the realities of people from majority populations in Aarhus, Amsterdam, Berlin, Lyon, Manchester, and Stockholm. White Working Class Communities in Berlin explores the views and experiences of the majority population living in the northern parts of the former East Berlin district of Marzahn-Hellersdorf with high indicators of social, economic, and political marginalization. The report focuses on six areas of...

Unmaking Americans: Insecure Citizenship in the United States

Laura Bingham & Natasha Arnpriester
In the United States, citizenship is a unifying force built around a core set of commonly agreed ideals, including the inherent equality of all people. Yet U.S. citizenship law and practice are marked by gaps, weaknesses, and opportunities for arbitrary decision-making. Today, those gaps and weaknesses are being exploited to take U.S. citizenship away from members of marginalized groups. This report and corresponding fact sheet document three techniques currently being used to attack the identity...

TB Policy in Brazil: A Civil Society Perspective

Published by the Open Society Institute's Public Health Watch project, TB Policy in Brazil: A Civil Society Perspective challenges the Brazilian government to improve its record on TB, which kills more than 5,000 Brazilians annually and is a leading cause of infectious death for people living with HIV/AIDS. Drawing upon extensive field research and interviews with a wide range of patients, health care workers, and policymakers, the report notes that public awareness of TB's symptoms...

Shining a Light on a Hidden Epidemic

Jeff Hoover
Hepatitis C presents a serious health threat worldwide. Some 150 million individuals are currently living with the virus, and nearly four million people become infected every year. Hepatitis C is particularly devastating in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, where infection is strongly correlated with injection drug use. Yet, the cost of treatment remains prohibitive to most people in the region. Lack of effective treatment not only causes serious harm to individuals, it directly impacts the...

Regulating Police Stop and Search: An Evaluation of the Northamptonshire Police Reasonable Grounds Panel

Michael Shiner & Paul Thornbury
Police stops, including stop and search, vehicle stops, and identity checks, are one of the most common forms of adversarial contact between police and public. These encounters are notoriously asymmetric and have profound implications for police and community relations The Reasonable Grounds Panel developed by the Northamptonshire Police in England is an innovative approach to regulating police use of their stop and search powers. The Panel engages members of the public directly in determining whether...

Rights Not Rescue: Female, Male, and Trans Sex Workers' Human Rights in Southern Africa

Jayne Arnott & Anna-Louise Crago
Sex workers are subjected to widespread human rights abuses, including police violence and unequal access to health care, in Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa. Despite enormous challenges, sex workers are organizing to protect their rights and demand an end to violence and discrimination. Published by the Open Society Institute, Rights Not Rescue is based on a series of interviews and focus groups with sex workers and advocates throughout the three countries.

Somalis in Leicester

Dilwar Hussain, Sughra Ahmed, Samina Ali, Shaila Bibi, Rabiha Hannan & Naved Siddiqi
Somalis in Leicester explores the views and experiences of Somali communities living in Leicester, focusing on five areas of local policy—employment, education, health, political participation, and policing—as well as broader themes of belonging and identity. The presence of Somalis in the UK dates back to the late 19th century. Today, the Somali community of Leicester is one of the largest in the UK, and Leicester’s Somalis can be divided into three broad categories: British-born Somalis,...

Somalis in London

Anya Ahmed
Somalis in London explores the views and experiences of Somali communities living in London, focusing on six areas of local policy—employment, education, housing, health and social protection, political participation, and policing and security—as well as broader themes of belonging and identity and the role of the media. The report uses the term “British Somali” to capture the lived experiences of being from one country (Somalia) and of another (the United Kingdom). British Somalis living in...

Roma Education Research Project

Noe Medina & Karin Chao
The Roma Education Research Project presents research findings, conclusions, and recommendations based on research information gathered on selected Roma education programs during a seven-month project (September 2000-March 2001). A shorter summary report is also available. The report emphasizes conclusions and recommendations about each program and across all seven programs from the final report. The report is available in PDF format. It is also available through the Resource Pack on the Roma Education Initiative website.

Strengthening Pretrial Justice: A Guide to the Effective Use of Indicators

Martin Schӧnteich
The decision to detain a person before he is found guilty of a crime, whether made by an arresting office, prosecutor, or judicial officer, can have a severe, lasting, and adverse impact. Pretrial detention is one of the worst things that can happen to a person: the detainee immediately loses his freedom, and can also lose his family, health, home, job, and community ties. Informed policy makers are aware of these problems, and understand the...

Strategic Litigation Impacts: Roma School Desegregation

Adriána Zimová
Using strategic litigation to effect social change can be stunningly effective, capable of breaking down longstanding injustices and opening new paths of human rights protection and enforcement. But strategic litigation can be complex, time-consuming, expensive, and risky. It may fail outright. Or it may succeed, but engender a powerful backlash against the very values and protections it seeks to enshrine in law. This study is the first in a four-part series examining strategic litigation impacts....

To Protect and Serve

Rachel Thomas, Sanjay Patil, Roxanne Saucier & Anna-Louise Crago
Around the world, sex workers and people who use drugs report that police are often a major impediment to accessing health and social services. Common police practices—using condoms as evidence of prostitution, harassing drug users at needle exchange points, or confiscating medications for drug treatment—fuel the HIV epidemic by driving sex workers and drug users away from life-saving services. Emerging partnerships between police, health experts, and community groups are beginning to prove that law enforcement...

Transparency and Silence: A Survey of Access to Information Laws and Practices in 14 Countries

Helen Darbishire & Thomas Carson
This comparative study on access to information in 14 countries finds that transitional democracies outperformed established ones in providing information about government activities. Bulgaria, Romania, Armenia, Mexico, and Peru did better in answering citizens’ requests for information than France and Spain. Published by the Open Society Justice Initiative, Transparency and Silence documents how various countries did—or did not—honor the right of access to information. In analyzing over 1,900 requests for information filed in 14 countries,...

The Socioeconomic Impact of Pretrial Detention

David Berry
Approximately 10 million people per year pass through pretrial detention; many of them will spend months or even years behind bars—without being tried or found guilty. Locking away millions of people who are presumed innocent is a waste of human potential that undermines economic development. The economic effects of excessive pretrial detention—from lost wages to misspent government resources—are documented in a new report, The Socioeconomic Impact of Pretrial Detention, published by the Open Society Justice...

Strategic Litigation Impacts: Torture in Custody

Helen Duffy
The prohibition of torture is one of the most widely known and thoroughly protected human rights. International law prohibits torture under all circumstances, everywhere, without exception. Yet at least 141 countries are still practicing torture today. Strategic litigation is one of many tools being used increasingly by human rights advocates to bridge the gap between theory and reality and give practical effect to the protections promised by international law. These protections are especially important for...

Our Lives Matter: Sex Workers Unite for Health and Rights

Anna-Louise Crago
Our Lives Matter: Sex Workers Unite for Health and Rights highlights the creative ways in which sex workers in eight countries have organized to defend their human rights and health. The groups featured in this report include: Davida, Brazil Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee, India Durjoy Nari Shongho, Bangladesh Humanitarian Action, Russia Odyseus, Slovakia Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Taskforce, South Africa Stella, Canada Urban Justice Center's Sex Workers Project, United States Our Lives Matter describes...

Globally Informed, Locally Responsive

Robert G. Newman
Methadone is one of the best-studied and most effective medication-assisted treatments for heroin dependence. Individuals and communities have found that methadone treatment not only reduces the use of opiates and the prevalence of overdose, but it also improves adherence to other medical regimens, increases employment, and improves family function. The systems that deliver methadone treatment programs, the conditions for their creation, expansion, and therapeutic success are just as important to understand as the treatment itself....

HIV/AIDS Policy in the United States

Chris Collins
In June 2001, at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS (UNGASS), 189 national governments, including the United States, adopted the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS. The document commits governments to improve responses to their domestic AIDS epidemics and sets targets for AIDS-related financing, policy, and programming. The Declaration also stipulates that governments conduct periodic reviews to assess progress on realizing their UNGASS commitments. In recognition of the crucial role civil society plays...

Transforming Health: International Rights-Based Advocacy for Trans Health

Kellan Baker
Trans people across the world face substantial barriers to adequate health and health care. They are targets of discrimination and violence, are at greater risk of contracting HIV, and experience a higher incidence of mental health problems like depression. They face discrimination from health care providers, a lack of doctors trained to address their needs, and the refusal of many national health systems and insurance providers to cover their care. Yet trans communities are building...

From the Mountaintops: What the World Can Learn from Drug Policy Change in Switzerland

Joanne Csete
Published by the Open Society Foundations, this report looks at how evidence-based services such as heroin treatment, injection rooms, and needle exchange can lower HIV infection rates, improve health outcomes, and lower crime rates. Switzerland, a country known for its solid conservatism, was shaken by seeing its cities become the point of convergence of thousands of drug users and counterculture activists, culminating in large open drug scenes in the late 1980s. The country was hit...

Ethnic Origin and Disability Data Collection in Europe: Measuring Inequality—Combating Discrimination

Isabelle Chopin
The report Ethnic Origin and Disability Data Collection in Europe: Measuring Inequality—Combating Discrimination is published within the framework of the Equality Data Initiative, a project launched by the Open Society Foundations in collaboration with the Migration Policy Group and the European Network Against Racism to increase awareness within the European Union for the need to collect reliable data for groups at risk of discrimination. The report challenges the commonly held view in Europe that the...

Drug Policy in Portugal: The Benefits of Decriminalizing Drug Use

Artur Domoslawski
In 2000, the Portuguese government responded to widespread public concern over drugs by rejecting a “war on drugs” approach and instead decriminalized drug possession and use. It further rebuffed convention by placing the responsibility for decreasing drug demand as well as managing dependence under the Ministry of Health, rather than the Ministry of Justice. With this, the official response toward drug-dependent persons shifted from viewing them as criminals, to treating them as patients. Drug Policy...

Coca Industrialization: A Path to Innovation, Development, and Peace in Colombia

Dora Lucila Troyano Sanchez & David Restrepo
For decades, Colombia has faced the challenge of promoting economic development and peace in its coca growing regions while quelling the flow of coca for unlawful purposes. During this time, the country has rarely considered promoting economic development with coca, partly because national and international frameworks and policies have written off coca growers as one of the main drivers of the drug trade. The 2016 peace agreement marked the first significant shift towards a paradigm...

Registration Year

  • 2021

Resource Types

  • Report


  • Open Society Foundations
  • Carleton University
  • University of Calgary
  • York University