DRI is disappointed by the approval of the Human Rights Strategy without discussion with stakeholders

The Democracy Research Institute is disappointed by the non-inclusive and closed process of development of the Human Rights Strategy. Contrary to the expectations of public organizations, the Strategy was approved by the Government of Georgia two weeks after its publication, so that the stakeholders did not have the opportunity to submit their opinions relating to the document. The National Human Rights Strategy (2014-2020) approved by the Parliament of Georgia in 2014 expired at the end of 2020. Although government agencies had been working on the draft strategy for more than 2 years, the draft became available to the public only on August 23, 2022.

Although the initial deadline for civil society organizations was extended from August 31 to September 5 for submitting their comments, the Democracy Research Institute emphasizes that the deadline given to review the document was disproportionately short, especially considering that it took two years for the government agencies to work on the document.

Generally speaking, the entire process of the development of the document lacked inclusiveness. Although on August 31, during the review of the draft strategy, it was emphasized that it was important for all stakeholders to have the opportunity to express their opinions and participate in the discussion before the approval of the Strategy, the Government approved the document on September 5 without proper discussions.

The document prepared by the Administration of the Government of Georgia covers virtually all the main challenges in the direction of human rights protection in Georgia. However, for the effectiveness of the Strategy, it would be very important to immediately start working on the development of a detailed action plan based on the Strategy.

The Democracy Research Institute hopes that, unlike the Strategy development process, the action plan development process will be inclusive and open to all stakeholders.