The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) is a principal and autonomous organ of the Organization of American States (OAS) whose mission is to promote and protect human rights in the American hemisphere and to serve as a consultative organ of the OAS in these matters.
The IACHR is composed of seven independent members who serve in a personal capacity. Created by the OAS in 1959, the IACHR has its headquarters in Washington, D.C. The work of the IACHR rests on three main pillars: the individual petition system; monitoring of the human rights situation in the Member States; and the attention devoted to priority thematic areas. However, the Commission’s work is also informed by other principles, among them the following: the pro homine principle, whereby a law must be interpreted in the manner most advantageous to the human being; the necessity of access to justice, and the inclusion of the gender perspective in all Commission activities.