There are many organisations and institutions that work directly or indirectly with human rights. Some work with human rights in general, while others support particular groups in society and protect specific rights. You may consult with these organisations and institutions to seek help in your individual situation.

Non-governmental organisations

Most organisations working with human rights are private non-profit initiatives. Each usually specializes in in protecting specific groups in society and advocating for the rights that are relevant to those groups. They can often help with legal advice and provide practical, social or psychological support to victims of human rights related violations. These organisations are often also involved in raising public awareness, defending rights and advocating policies, providing legal aid or other support, and monitoring and research activities. 

State institutions

There are also several state agencies that deal directly or indirectly with human rights in different areas, such as children’s rights, data protection, health, employment, discrimination etc. These agencies can be consulted for a variety of reasons and may offer consultations or legal aid, as well as examine complaints from individuals. However, they cannot officially establish whether your human rights were violated.

Therefore, these agencies should not be confused with official human rights institutions  the sole aim of which is to establish whether your human rights have been violated. The only exceptions are Gender Equality and Equal Treatment Commissioner and the Chancellor of Justice, who can help you to understand your rights and also formally establish their official binding.

About this Guide

This Guide introduces different organisations that operate in Estonia and work with human rights. The Guide explains how these organisations can help you in situations related to possible human rights violations. It will also provide general information about their activities and their contact details.

Please note that new organisations may be added over time. 

Human Rights Guide

A European platform for human rights education