BIHR’s work with the Public Sector

BIHR has pioneered work on a human rights approach to delivering health and social care services, in partnership with the Department of Health (DH) and five NHS organisations. In 2008 we published the ‘Human Rights in Healthcare Framework’. The ethos behind this project work has been to take human rights out of NHS legal departments and apply them in the day to day running of NHS organisations, to help make improvements to services and to people’s lives.

More information about our public sector work can be found in The Difference it Makes: Putting Human Rights at the Heart of Health and Social Care

In addition to our project work we run a range of open and in-house training services, and have helped build the capacity of thousands to health and care practitioners over the last 10 years. See our training page for more information about how we can help your organisation.

BIHR’s work with the voluntary sector

Voluntary and community sector organisations are increasingly playing an important role in protecting our human rights – both as providers of services, and as advocates and campaigners on behalf of those in need of better care. Most organisations are working on human rights issues, such as reducing inequality and promoting social justice, but relatively few are using human rights to support their work.

Human Rights in Healthcare

BIHR’s Human Rights in Healthcare Project funded through the Department of Health explored ways of assisting voluntary sector organisations to use human rights to provide and advocate for better healthcare services. BIHR worked closely with 20 organisations across England, with a sub-group focused on mental health. Together we explored how human rights approaches can lead to changes in health and social care practice. For more information about our Human Rights in Healthcare Project see The Difference it Makes: Putting Human Rights at the Heart of Health and Social Care

In summer 2014 we launched two exciting new projects funded by the Department of Health:

BIHR’s partnership project, ‘Connecting Human Rights to the Frontline’ seeks to place human rights at the heart of mental health services, helping to ensure frontline staff have the knowledge and skills to fulfil the vital role they can play in upholding the dignity and human rights of patients in an increasingly complex and economically challenging climate for care. There are 7 service providers from across England partnering with BIHR on this project. Interested in following their progress? Read more.

Our new project Care and Support: A Human Rights Approach to Advocacy is working with six groups to ensure people with mental health and capacity issues have increased control and autonomy over treatment decisions, and make sure they are treated with dignity and respect. For more information about this project, click here.

Human Rights in the Community

The Human Rights in the Community Project (2010-2013) aimed to take human rights out of the courtrooms and into the heart of our communities. We know from our work at BIHR that the simple fact of knowing about human rights can have a real impact on the ground; but too few people know about their rights or how rights can be useful. The Human Rights in the Community Project sought to bridge this gap between knowing human rights are relevant to your work, and not knowing enough about them to practically apply them in everyday work.
For more information about the Human Rights in the Community Project see Make Human Rights Happen, a guide for voluntary and community groups.