Human Rights First

This post is also available in: French, Spanish

Contact Information



Human Rights First is an independent advocacy and action organization that challenges the U.S. government and private companies to respect human rights and the rule of law. When they don’t, HRF steps in to demand reform, accountability and justice. Around the world, HRF works to best harness American influence to secure core freedoms.

Areas of Work

HRF runs a program on defenders. Other areas of work include: refugee protection, discrimination, crimes against humanity, law and security.

Urgent Responses Offered

Urgent appeals, international solidarity and communication strategies

HRF provides sample letters with actions that need to be taken by national authorities and addresses for individuals or organizations to take action. See the Take Action section of the website.

Advocacy with regional and international mechanism

HRF regularly submits urgent appeals to the UN Special Rapporteur and other Rapporteurs depending on the nature of the violation. HRF also works with:

  • The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights;
  • EU embassies and other institutions.

Awards and fellowships

  • Roger N. Baldwin Medal of Liberty
  • Human Rights First Human Rights Award: presented to a human rights organization or activist outside of the United States that has made a distinguished contribution to the protection and promotion of human rights.
  • Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders

Legal assistance and trial observation

HRF carries out trial observation missions.
Geographic Focus




The website is available in English, with some urgent actions available in Spanish and Farsi.