Established in 2011, Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (HROC) is a coalition of progressive organizations upholding constitutionally protected human rights standards. The coalition consists of the Lithuanian Jewish (Litvak) Community, Lithuanian Centre for Human Rights, Centre for Equality Advancement, national LGBT rights organization Lithuanian Gay League, Mental Health Perspectives, Roma Community Centre, Tolerant Youth Association and Human Rights Monitoring Institute. More about the members here.
To strive for the effective implementation of human rights, equal opportunities and non-discrimination principles.
- Monitor the implementation of human rights, equal opportunities and non-discrimination principles based on disability, age, gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, citizenship, religious affiliation, faith, language, ancestry, social position, opinions, views and any other grounds in Lithuania;
- Publicize human rights abuses, draw the attention of governmental institutions and society alike to the rights of socially vulnerable individuals and their potential abuse;
- Seek accountability for human rights abuses from governmental institutions and work for every individual case of human rights abuse to receive legal consideration.
In the summer of 2011, eight non-governmental organizations working in the field of human rights and anti-discrimination decided to join forces as the Human Rights Coalition (HRC).
On June 20th, 2011 representatives from the Lithuanian Gay League, Lithuanian Jewish Community, Lithuanian Centre for Human Rights, Centre for Equality Advancement, Centre for Equal Rights and Social Development, Mental Health Perspectives, Roma Community Centre and Human Rights Monitoring Institute signed the Human Rights Coalition’s memorandum.
- The Human Rights Coalition was established in response to:
- A regress in the human rights sector since Lithuania joined the European Union in 2004;
- A lack of political will and failure by governmental institutions to formulate a coherent, effective and progressive human rights policy;
- Public disappointment and feelings of helplessness, expressed through rising distrust in governmental institutions, active emigration, aggression and civil apathy;
- A lack of public awareness on human rights issues;
- The concerning position of vulnerable demographics;
- Society’s rising radical tendencies, massive discrimination and intolerance.
On April 5th, 2012 seeking to become Lithuania’s operator of the EEA Grants programme, the Human Rights Monitoring Institute ended its membership in the coalition in order to avoid potential conflicts of interest.
In 2014, Human Rights Coalition joined the National NGO Coalition.
On December 4th, 2014 members of the coalition signed a new joint venture agreement and changed their name to the Coalition of Human Rights Organizations, committing to further active cooperation for the betterment of human rights. The renewed coalition was joined by the Tolerant Youth Association, which previously held an observer’s status. Centre for Equal Rights and Social Development did not extend its membership.
In 2017, the Human Rights Monitoring Institute expressed willingness to renew its membership in the coalition and was accepted in the same year.
In September–December, 2017 HROC successfully carried out a project to strengthen institutional cooperation between non-governmental organizations, financed by the Ministry of Social Security and Labour (MSSL). During the project, HROC members formalized the coalition’s activity and established the HROC association.