As we get closer to Amnesty International’s annual Write for Rights campaign, it’s important to remember how effective your words can truly be. Sometimes, it seems like writing letters isn’t enough to make a difference, but it is, and the 2014 Write for Rights campaign is proof.
Amnesty International supporters wrote Nigerian officials to pardon Moses Akatugba, who was on death row for stealing three phones. He was sentenced to death at age 16, which should not have happened. Amnesty International does not support using the death penalty for minors, and they are proud to say Akatugba has now been released.
A man in the Philippines, Jerryme Corre, was reportedly being subjected to torture at the hands of the police. Because Amnesty International featured his case as part of the Write for Rights 2014 campaign, authorities in the Philippines were flooded with letters. The police are now investigating further into his case to find out what happened.
In Norway, a transgender woman named John Jeanette Solstad Remø was struggling to legally change her gender. The laws in Norway prevent anyone from legally changing genders without comprehensive and invasive medical exams. Thanks to Amnesty International supporters, the laws have been changed.
Liu Ping, who has been imprisoned in China for her activism, has not been allowed to have visitors—not even her family. Because the case was featured so prominently in the Write for Rights campaign, it gained a lot of international attention. Amnesty International believes this put pressure on the Chinese authorities, and now Ping’s daughter has been allowed to visit her mother in prison.
This is just a handful of the positive effects the Write for Rights campaign has had. Don’t forget to read about the cases featured in the 2015 campaign, and make sure to participate and record the letters you write. You can help make a huge difference for people around the world who are struggling.