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Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission

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The successor to the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission is charged with the U.S. Congress' initiatives for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other relevant human rights agreements, including:

  • Developing congressional strategies to promote, defend and advocate internationally recognized human rights norms reflecting the role and responsibilities of the United States Congress.
  • Raising greater awareness of human rights issues among Members of Congress and their staff, as well as the public.
  • Providing expert human rights advice to Members of Congress and their staff
  • Advocatinge on behalf of individuals or groups whose human rights are violated or are in danger of being violated.
  • Collaborating closely with professional staff of relevant congressional committees on human rights matters.
  • Collaborating closely with the President of the United States and the Executive Branch, as well as recognized national and international human rights entities, to promote human rights initiatives in the United States Congress.
  • Encouraging Members of Congress to actively engage in human rights matters.

It was named in honor of the late Rep. Tom Lantos (D-California), the only Holocaust survivor in Congress and the first human rights caucus founder. Congressman Frank Wolf (R-Virginia) is the Republican co-chair and James McGovern the Democratic co-chair.