Human Rights is one of the four pillars of the OAS. The promotion and protection of human rights are among the key objectives of the Organization. The Inter-American Convention on Human Rights is a binding document on Member States of the OAS.
The Inter-America Commission of Human Rights (IACHR) and the Inter-American Court for Human Rights are part of the Inter-American Human Rights System. The Secretariat for Access to Rights and Equity (SARE) was established to compliment and support the defense of human rights in the hemisphere, while also expanding the access to rights by all persons especially the most vulnerable.

  • The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) is the main organ of the OAS responsible for promoting the observance and protection of human rights in the hemisphere.  Jamaica has ratified the Inter-American Convention on Human Rights.
  • The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) has seven Commissioners elected in their personal capacity for a four year term. Jamaicans have been elected to serve on the Commission over the years. More recently, Tracy Robinson of Jamaica served for one term from 2012 to 2015 and was President of the Commission in 2014. As of January 2016 another Jamaican, Margaret May McCaulay, who was elected during the 45th OAS General Assembly, is now serving on the Commission.
  • In 2014 and 2015 Jamaica was required to attend Hearings of the Commission and present a defense against various claims of human rights abuses. The Permanent Mission staff working with the relevant Government Ministries and Agencies was able to represent and defend the country’s interest before the Commission.