Human rights refer to the inherent rights and freedoms all human beings are entitled to.  The international framework for such values is encompassed by the United Nations, which has drafted vital documents setting out the standards for Government Action to ensure fundamental rights and freedoms are upheld.  The United Nations has identified that human rights can generally be categorized as either an economic, social or cultural right or a civil and political right – concerning the right to freedom and movement. 

Justice Action is a non-profit organization that advocates for the better protection of  these rights, striving to uphold the rights of vulnerable members of society, particularly prisoners. Prisoners are deprived of their liberties, their civil and political rights are greatly limited by the human rights violations they fall vulnerable to. The economic, social and cultural rights of prisoners are largely denied as prisoners receive inadequate rehabilitation. This is due to prisons often lacking educational and mental health services which foster harm minimisation and behavioural reform.

At present, Justice Action is engaged with Australia’s implementation of the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture (OPCAT). As part of this campaign, we have also been compiling research regarding solitary confinement and the strip searching of women. Prisoners’ right to safety and bodily integrity are impeded by conduct such as solitary confinement and strip searches. This conduct imposes degrading, humiliating and traumatic experiences upon them. Our investigations into these areas will allow us to provide a set of recommendations to better uphold Australia’s commitment to and obligations under the OPCAT. During this period, Justice Action has also extended its focus to issues stemming from COVID-19. Also found on this page are earlier campaigns that Justice Action partook in regarding prisoners’ Right to Vote, Freedom of Expression, and Freedom of Association.

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