78. WE HAVE DECLARED WAR ON POVERTY AND POVERTY HAS WON. (President Lyndon Johnson, 1964) »

Therefore, any convincing HR agenda must explicitly address the issues of poverty, gender and equity. It cannot be assumed that HR are inherently gender sensitive and will promote gender equality lest the HR framework explicitly focuses on gender issues from a rights perspective.

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77. MORE ON LEADERSHIP »

Because of so many past and present misdirected efforts, most NGOs no longer can be counted among the leaders in HR work. For the time being, funding NGOs is not the groundbreaking answer to the reduction of poverty --and less so to the eradication of HR violations.

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76. WHY POWER ONLY YIELDS TO COUNTER-POWER. »

But this clout cannot stay only at the level of protesting (e.g., at the WTO or the WB/IMF meetings); a newly acquired clout will only take us to higher levels if it makes viable, constructive (new) propositions…and in HR work we can make plenty those propositions: re-read your old HR Readers…

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75. MORE ON HUMAN RIGHTS WORKERS AS ACTIVISTS »

Hope is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense --regardless of how it turns out. (Vaclav Havel)

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74. FIVE DECADES OF DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE HAVE COST THE WORLD OVER 1 TRILLION USD: HOW MUCH IN IMPROVED HUMAN RIGHTS IS THERE TO SHOW FOR THAT? »

The Reader has also repeatedly made calls to de-mistify the false division many among us still see between what is considered to be political and non-political: HR is politics, as is food, health, education, the environment…and we unfortunately have little sustainable progress to show for in any of these fronts.

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73. RECAPITULATING: THE EIGHT MAJOR DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE BASIC NEEDS AND THE HUMAN RIGHTS APPROACH TO DEVELOPMENT »

The government does not yet have the political will to enforce legislation to iodize salt. The government has chosen to ignore its duty by failing to enforce legislation to iodize all salt.

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72. The worst tactic is to impose the transition to a HR-based approach (HRAP) by fast-tracking. More sensitization and in-depth training on the HRAP is needed. Good time has to be spent on training a core group. Then one can move on to district trainers and facilitators and finally to community mobilizers; all this with the aim of developing HR-based community action plans. »

All the above can guide us in actions at the community level. But the biggest challenge in the HR approach to (development) programming (HRAP) still remains sustaining community motivation and commitment. This invariably requires for the community to perceive key needed changes and to discern which changes they can realistically make happen. A step-by-step approach with emphasis on actions controlled by the communities themselves --as well as lobbying for those actions needed for which resources are controlled by duty-bearers outside the community-- will eventually pay-off.

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71. REMEMBER? RIGHTS MEAN NOT ONLY HAVING A RIGHT TO SOMETHING, BUT ALSO CLAIMING THAT RIGHT FROM APPROPRIATE DUTY-BEARERS. »

The worst tactic is to impose the transition to a HR-based approach (HRAP) by fast-tracking. More sensitization and in-depth training on the HRAP is needed. Good time has to be spent on training a core group. Then one can move on to district trainers and facilitators and finally to community mobilizers; all this with the aim of developing HR-based community action plans.

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70. A BASIS TO DEVELOP A NEW PRAXIS FOR THE FUTURE (Part 16 of 16) »

All the above (being desperately incomplete and a bit caricaturesque) sounds quite grandiose (and even romantic) and is packed with heavy-sounding, politically-charged action verbs.

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69. A BASIS TO DEVELOP A NEW VISION FOR THE FUTURE. (Part 15 of 16) »

Making prescriptive recommendations on what each of us needs to do to contribute our individual grain of salt to making pro-HR interventions more effective and sustainable would be presumptuous. The materials in this Reader are just a wake-up-call for some and an always-timely-reminder for others. It is about being more critical about what we do and see. This, as a basis for each of us to develop our own (new) vision for the future: a vision that fits our own specific situation, one that we commit ourselves to share, and one that we are willing to implement working with others.

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