NHRIs can individually and collectively intervene before the European Court of Human Rights. ENNHRI, through its Legal Working Group, provides support for strategic litigation and prepares third-party interventions on key human rights concerns. In the case Big Brother Watch & Others vs The United Kingdom, which related to the right to respect for private life and data protection, ENNHRI submitted written observations through two third-party interventions in 2013 and 2019. These provided recommendations based on an analysis of the international and European legal framework, as well as practices by Member States. The Court delivered its judgements on the 13 September 2018 and 25 May 2021. On both occasions, ENNHRI’s submission was included within its conclusions.
Peer support among NHRIs can help address challenges faced in a context of limitations on democratic space. Together with regional partners, ENNHRI organises training and capacity building activities for NHRI staff. Topics covered include human rights defenders, NHRIs under threat, and communicating human rights. For example, the NHRI Academy 2021, jointly organised by ENNHRI and OSCE/ODIHR, focused on “Protecting human rights defenders and co-creating inclusive civil society space”. Moreover, ENNHRI’s 2018 Annual Conference gathered over 100 human rights stakeholders from across Europe to discuss how European NHRIs can better foster democratic space and support human rights defenders in the region.