January 26, 2022
This assessment builds on existing bodies of literature, interviews with key informants and stakeholders, two case studies, and Freedom House experiences to better understand the nature of the defense and protection of Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) and pro-democracy Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Latin America.The study undertakes an institutional and organizational landscape analysis to: determine which entities, organizations and individuals are involved in the protection and defense of HRDs and CSOs (with a particular focus on relocation); identify strategies and approaches to support the defense and protection of HRDs and CSOs within their countries and in exile; analyze the gaps and challenges of existing approaches; and develop recommendations to strengthen the protection and defense of HRDs in Latin America.Given time and resource limitations, the assessment was relatively narrow in its scope. As such, it is not intended to be an impact or capacity assessment; much less, an evaluation of specific programs and/or initiatives. Rather, it describes HRD protection systems in Latin America, highlights opportunities for future HRD activities and major areas that merit further regional and national attention, and HRD protection systems in Latin America. The assessment also highlights opportunities and offers strategic recommendations.