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Hello Thalia,

How are you doing? How are your loved ones doing?

As I sit writing this, in my living room in Wellington, New Zealand, I am torn between feeling the relief of my country having reported no new cases of covid-19 in the past 17 days, and the sadness of knowing how rampantly the virus is spreading in so many other countries around the world.  

I also feel torn in my response to so many people uniting in anti-racism solidarity protests across the United States and in cities around the world. I'm worried about people at protests catching the virus or falling prey to the very police violence that many of them are protesting against. But I recognise the necessity of this risk, and I'm happy that these protests are drawing attention to the urgent need to dismantle structural racism – not only in the United States, where the spark for the current outpouring originated, but everywhere. Unlike covid-19, New Zealand has plenty of cases of racism.

A year ago, when we released our 2019 dataset at an event in New York City, we published civil and political rights data for the United States for the first time. Many people were shocked to see how poorly the United States performed, ranking alongside Saudi Arabia on the right to freedom from extrajudicial killing, and alongside Fiji on the right to participate in government. Although some journalists reported on the findings, including this piece by Lauren Wolfe which featured on the front page of, overall I got the impression that many found the US results just a bit too uncomfortable to discuss. My HRMI co-founder Dr K Chad Clay, Director of the Center for the Study of Global Issues (GLOBIS) at the University of Georgia says that he, like many other human rights advocates and scholars, has been pointing out the United States' human rights problems for years, and most of the time it has felt like shouting into a void. I encourage you to read more from him on recent events and HRMI’s data for the United States in this Twitter thread, and on Facebook here.

Changing the world for the better will take more than just protests. It requires an intentional, explicit, and sustained focus on the systemic problems that result in the racial and other disparities we see worldwide. If you’ve been following HRMI for a while then you may know that one of our touchstone phrases is “What gets measured, gets improved”. We have to be able to see a problem, in order to address it. Country leaders need strong, evidence-based arguments for doing what is right. With good human rights data, researchers can show the benefits – including for the economy – of treating people well, and allowing them to flourish.

In just over two weeks, we will release our 2020 dataset in an online webinar. We hope you will join us live if your time zone allows: Thursday 25 June at 12 noon NZST, 9am Melbourne and Seoul, 8am in Hong Kong, Wednesday June 24th at 8pm EDT, and 5pm PDT. We will share the recording for those of you who can’t make it live.

Come and hear and see some fascinating reflections on things like the changes in human rights in Brazil under Bolsonaro, the 700 million people India could lift out of poverty if it were meeting its human rights obligations by our measures, and brand-new human rights scores for 203 countries.

Register here now. Because what gets measured, gets improved.

And in the meantime, please stay safe, and be kind,

You are invited! Join us on 24/25 June
We will release our 2020 human rights scores on 24/25 June and we're very much looking forward to sharing them with you

You are warmly invited to our online launch event, as above: please register here.

Journalists can sign up to receive embargoed access to the new data a week early: please register here.

The event is 90 minutes and will begin at:

Wednesday 24 June
9pm Rio de Janiero
8pm New York
5pm Los Angeles

Thursday 25 June
12 noon Auckland
10am Melbourne
8am Hong Kong

See you there!
Who's using our data?
Are you using our human rights data - for any purpose? Do you know another organisation or person who is? 

We would love to hear all about it. 

Everything we do is designed to be useful for a range of people: researchers, advocates, governments, investors, and more. It helps us improve if we know how our data are being used, so please contact us to tell us what you know. 
New Rights Tracker
Have you visited our new-look Rights Tracker yet?

We've added several new features, including:

- search by 31 different groups of people, such as women and girls; journalists; LGBTQIA+ people; children.
- filter options so you can compare your country with your peers and neighbours, for example, on the right to food, or the right to participate in government.

Please have a look around the new site (and refresh your screen, or clear your cache if you get the old version), and tell us what you think.

We are constantly improving the Rights Tracker, and have more improvements to launch when we release our new 2020 data. We'd love to hear your wish-list.
New team members
We are delighted to introduce five new team members who have joined HRMI over recent months. 

In order of the picture above, please meet:

Charlotte Weston, Administration Coordinator (based with the Wellington HRMI team, New Zealand)
Sam Manuela, Pacific Data Co-Lead (University of Auckland, New Zealand)
Zoe Higgins, Partnerships (Wellington HRMI team, New Zealand)
Seuta’afili Patrick Thomsen, Pacific Data Co-Lead (University of Auckland, New Zealand)
Drew Dalton, SOGI Human Rights Lead (ReportOUT, Sunderland, United Kingdom)

You can read more about all our team members on our website
New on our website
Have you caught up on the latest articles on our website?
Thanks for your interest in HRMI. You are also most welcome to follow us on TwitterYouTubeLinkedIn, and Facebook to keep up to date in between newsletters. 

Please also feel free to contact us directly with feedback, ideas, and requests. We're here to help.

And don't forget to sign up for our 2020 data launch. See you there!

Human Rights Measurement Initiative
Motu Economic and Public Policy Research

Level 1, 97 Cuba St
PO Box 24390
New Zealand

Website: Click here

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