Many organizations today released “shadow” reports (also known as “NGO Alternative Reports”) that they submitted to the UN Human Rights Committee. This Committee is composed of independent experts who are tasked with the responsibility of monitoring compliance with the International Covenant for Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Representatives from the United States government will appear before this Committee in Geneva in mid-October of this year. The United States submitted a report to the Committee describing its compliance with the ICCPR, which it ratified in 1992. A number of “shadow” reports submitted to the Committee relate to international women’s rights in the United States. Legal Momentum, the University of Miami Human Rights Clinics, and other groups filed a report called “Domestic Violence, Gun Violence, and ‘Stand Your Ground’ Laws.” The Center for Reproductive Rights submitted a report called “Fulfilling Unmet Promises: Securing and Protecting Reproductive Rights and Equality in the United States.” CLAIM, the ACLU, and the University of Chicago’s International HumanRights Clinic also filed a report on the practice of shackling pregnant women deprived of their liberty in the United States.
The US Network for Human Rights, which has been coordinating efforts on shadow reporting for the ICCPR, has called Day of Action today to draw attention to the United States’ obligations under the ICCPR (among other things).