My Perspective

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I took this picture yesterday at a hearing in the House of Representatives on the situation of human rights defenders in Colombia, featuring a UN Special Rapporteur and speakers from our partner organizations the U.S. Office on Colombia, Human Rights First, and the Colectivo de Abogados José Alvear Restrepo. LAWG and our partners made lots of calls in the days before to turn people out. Take a look! It's packed!As a newcomer to the LAWG team, and inside the beltway advocacy, I have been surprised over the last few months to learn what it actually takes to achieve the change we want. Before I started, I assumed that if we could simply bring the facts about real people who are suffering as a result of U.S. policies in countries like Mexico and Colombia, we could make it happen. But it turns out that there's so much more that goes on in DC every day than I could have anticipated.

Now, you might have heard about members of Congress like Jim McGovern or Jan Schakowsky who have listened to LAWG and its partners, and often propose legislation or send letters to the administration championing our causes. But, for the few officials in Congress or the administration who stand up for human rights in Latin America, there are many more who will not take action unless they are pushed to do it. In order to take a strong stance, these officials must be constantly updated with information from sources they trust, while also hearing a clear message from the people that they represent.

So, I bet you're wondering now: how can I ensure that they're getting the right information? How can I know when it is most important to call to my legislators or the State Department?

I was wondering the same thing until I started working here and realized that it's LAWG's job to do just that! We first make sure you know what's going on in DC, and then we take your voice–and the voices of Latin American victims and activists–to the policymakers at the moments when it really counts.

Last week, excited by the opportunity I had to be in this position at such a historic moment, I proposed the Human Rights NOW campaign, which will be centered around better engaging grassroots activists like you. (Click here to learn more about the campaign if you missed our last action alert.) I'm excited to see it take off, but am gonna need the support from you to make it happen.

So, please click here to contribute to Human Rights NOW campaign and help us better connect you to the policymakers for real change.

Thank you so much for your time, dedication, and solidarity.