Human Rights Orgs Press Lawsuit Over Commission’s Failure to Follow Transparency Law
New York, N.Y. — On Friday, four international human rights groups — Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE), the Council for Global Equality, and the Global Justice Center, represented by Democracy Forward — explained in a new court filing why former Secretary Mike Pompeo’s Commission on Unalienable Rights cannot evade accountability after breaking federal transparency law at every turn. The groups filed suit over the Commission in March 2020.
In violation of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), former Secretary Pompeo deliberately stacked the Commission on Unalienable Rights with members with known hostility to LGBTQ+ and reproductive rights and without any known human rights practitioners. Pompeo’s Commission then unlawfully operated behind closed doors to produce an irreparably compromised final report. Once the report was published, Pompeo and the Commission’s members harmed the interests of human rights practitioners by touting the Commission’s findings and conclusions before the United Nations, foreign governments, and foreign civil society organizations. But the Commission’s report is unlawful and should be labeled as such. We’ll continue to fight for these results in court.
Democracy Forward is a nonprofit legal organization that scrutinizes Executive Branch activity across policy areas, represents clients in litigation to challenge unlawful actions, and educates the public when the White House or federal agencies break the law.