Submission by National Trade and Banking School, Sofia (BG)

Submission by National Trade and Banking School, Sofia (BG)

The RIGHTs Office: An online platform for human rights
A project of the NTBHS’s students

Knowing one’s rights is a substantial weapon in the XXI-st century. Not long ago a sufficient amount of young people were not well educated about their rights and often became a victim by having their rights violated. Still due to information on the internet and the power of social media, this problem has found its solution and the situation is recovering. But another “virus” has infected our society and many people end up with violated rights. Its name is indifference. Our society nowadays is partially well educated about its human rights, but unfortunately, people show no empathy and solidarity. The passive attitude towards justice and equality in some societies has been rooted in thoughts such as “I don’t know how to react and what to do”, “This is not my business”, “I can get in trouble (in a professional or personal perspective) if I step in”, “Nothing will change” and many more of that matter. This attitude results in helplessness and feeds impunity. Many victims (if your rights have been violated, you are a victim) can’t find help and support when trying to defend their rights, or advice on how to react and find a solution. The internet is an overwhelming source, but sadly the information there can be difficult to find, hard to understand and impossible to give an accurate answer to.

By exposing our problem our team decided to unite around the mission to create a socially committed society and to appeal to solidarity and defending human rights. Having in mind all the small details that contribute to the forming of the big problem, the students from NTBHS invented the project “The RIGHTs OFFICE”. The project itself is an online information platform for human rights and EU-rights. The essence of it is to be an innovative, modern and useful tool, which will be:

  • A bridge between people with experience and qualification in the field and people, who need help, support and advice;
  • A potential reference book for solving human rights cases.
  • Easily accessible;
  • With a comprehensive, clear and understandable content;
  • An accurate and reliable source of information;

The platform is a user-friendly website with a unique structure and content, which is the following:

  • A manual for human rights and rights in the EU;
  • A Q&A section, where the users can get an accurate answer of their questions concerning their rights as human beings and EU-citizens;
  • A unique guide for human rights and how to defend them, build independently by gathering all the various cases in the field.

As a platform for information, “The RIGHTs OFFICE” will have a manual for human rights and EU-rights, which also includes a simplified explanation to them, so that everyone can understand and learn it and when needed – use it. The information, given in this manual will be basic and a document, the people can refer to.

Still there could be any specific questions and interesting cases, which will need a more specific or concrete answer in order to be solved. That is why we want to hire a team of qualified lawyers in the field that can be a great help when defending human rights. In the Q&A section users can anonymously ask questions or share stories, in which their rights have been violated and the team or other users who have had the similar experience will answer the questions or share the possible solution to the problem. All the answers and their accuracy will be closely inspected and verified by several independent partnering teams, before being published. That way a bridge can be built between the ones, who need help and support, and the ones, who have the knowledge and the experience.

Some of the cases may be quite frequent; others may have interesting or specific solutions to them. That is the reason why we brought up the idea to classify the different cases, shared in the Q&A and their solution into several categories and gather them into a unique guide. This guide will be developed in time from the shared experience and the closed cases. And keeping in mind that the internet has a lot of information about many public cases, but not all of them are true and it’s difficult to find a specific one, our team agreed to put this information of great importance in one file. From this perspective we truly believe that if our project finds a realization there is a possibility this file could become a reference book and be of a major use not only to society, but also for a variety of institutions in the field of human rights.

As a whole our social project is to build a socially responsible and supportive society, which knows and defends human rights by showing that the ones, who need help, are not alone in this battle. They have support and can get advice or a solution to their problems. This will be achieved by creating and developing a digital semi-automatized law firm, specialized in defending human rights, that is free of charge. Our team stands behind the idea that every person, regardless of one’s financial state, has the right to understand, know and defend one’s own rights, without being afraid to do so.

Since this project is very bold and may be difficult to achieve right away, our team decided to start with one particular topic in the field of human rights. After the development of this particular sector and the popularity of the website have increased, we can add the other topics, one by one. This strategy will be successful for our project, because it will attract different target groups with the various topics and build a much larger user base.

Our team made the decision for the first topic to be social and labor rights. The reasons behind our choice were the following:

  • It is a widely discussed topic of great importance to the economic development;
  • By attracting young people, it can contribute to the building of a bigger user base and could have a positive effect to the popularity of the website.

Many young EU-citizens constantly get job offers from international companies, situated somewhere in the EU, not necessarily in the home country of the recipient. There is always a chance, this company may not exists, isn’t correct to its employees, is discriminating towards the social minorities or violates one’s social and labor rights. By sharing their experience (regardless positive or negative) from such jobs or inquiring whether a particular company is reliable or not, the website will create a list of companies, which are internationally-friendly, correct, not discriminating, and most importantly – real. The companies, included in the list are going to be verified by independent and reliable sources after being directed to our website by users. In our opinion such a list will prevent fraud and social and labor rights discrimination. It will be an innovative and extremely useful tool for finding a workplace.

Primarily we wanted to address first the young people, who are just starting work or are searching for a job, because they are not quite informed or experienced about what is yet to come. If such information is provided and easily accessible, young people’s motivation to start working and building a career will increase, which will result in boosting the economy.

Setting this particular target group of 20 to 35 year olds is going to be useful when promoting the platform, since those people are actively using social media and can share and give positive feedback online and to their friends. In order to get to them in the first place we are planning to make a marketing campaign by showing a variety of informative presentations in schools, universities and enterprises. Another step in our marketing strategy would be to concentrate in online and digital marketing, since it is cost-effective. As a result a big user base will be created.

All in all this innovative platform can become successful, because of the unique information, that it provides and its big demand from young people.

Step by step the whole platform will be developed in a way it can be extremely useful for the EU-citizen when searching for help and support when defending their rights. The students from the NTBHS hope that this social project will be well accepted among the young people and can reach many more with time in the future, so that we can achieve our goal to contribute to the well-being of our society by offering help and support to the ones, who need it.

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