Every four years, Front Line Defenders develops a strategic plan, after carefully consulting with human rights defenders, other key stakeholders and active organisations working with human rights defenders, as well as assessing the impact of its programmes and resources of support.
The global context in which Front Line Defenders will operate in the next four years will undoubtedly be more complex than the previous Strategic Plan period (2015-2018). The universal nature of human rights is being increasingly challenged. Democratic values are under threat with authoritarianism, unaccountable governance, systemic corruption, and extremist politics all on the rise. There is a concerted idealogical effort to undermine human rights as well as a high priority focus on repressing and discrediting human rights defenders.
Although human rights defenders have always been attacked in certain quarters, these attacks have broadened in scope and have also started to occur in previously liberal societies as the rise of populist, nationalist politics and politicians have emerged on a scale not seen since the 1930s. Within this context a key challenge is the danger that at the same time as defenders continue to be discredited and attacked in hostile countries, appreciation for the importance of the role of HRDs plummets amongst previously supportive governments.