About Us

Since 1961, Amnesty International USA has fought to protect human rights as the world’s largest grassroots human rights organization. Learn about our mission.

AI UK members and staff march on a street in London, 1983, the demonstration was held to mark AI's 'Prisoner of Conscience Week'.

We work to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth, and dignity are denied.

Our movement

Amnesty International is a global movement of millions of people demanding human rights for all people – no matter who they are or where they are. 

We are the world’s oldest and largest grassroots human rights organization. Since 1961, ordinary people across the world have chosen to take extraordinary action in defense of human rights for all. Read more about our history. 

Our vision

All people have  human rights. But those rights are abused or denied every single day. We are witnessing a rollback of human rights globally. World leaders are pushing hate, attempting to erase rights protections, commiting  crimes against humanity, and enacting policies that drive and deepen inequality. 

When that happens, Amnesty International finds the facts, exposes what’s happening, and rallies people together to force governments and others to respect everyone’s human rights. Our vision is of a world in which every person enjoys all of the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights instruments. In pursuit of this vision, our mission is to undertake research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of these rights.

How we work

We begin with a focus on the individual – both the case that illustrates a larger pattern of abuses as well as the individual member who takes action for human rights. Our researchers identify the root causes and consequences of the human rights violations. This research is used to inform the public and key decision-makers and to engage grassroots supporters. The mobilization of Amnesty activists, along with direct advocacy and public education work, enables us to win changes in laws, policies, culture, and on the individual cases themselves.

Our commitment to IDEA

Amnesty International is building a bigger, bolder and more inclusive movement. As an international, intercultural, intergenerational and intersectional movement of activists committed to protecting and advancing human rights for all, Amnesty is deeply committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Accessibility (IDEA).

It’s not only vital that we walk the talk, but IDEA is also an imperative for innovation, growth and impact. In other words, we simply cannot fulfill our mission without it. We recognize inclusion is always intentional and an ongoing journey that requires all of us. Our entire community of activists, including our members, staff and board of directors are partners in embracing diversity, fostering an inclusive culture and increasing equity and accessibility for all.

We invite you to join us as we embark on this journey together! Learn more here.

Our crisis response teams and researchers uncover individual human rights abuses and document patterns of violations in crisis situations around the world.

Our campaign teams use this research to educate the public about human rights abuses – and they give members and grassroots activists the information and tools they need to demand that human rights be protected.

Our staff and volunteer leaders engage in direct advocacy with policymakers at the state and federal levels in the U.S., while we rally grassroots activists to demand that policymakers protect human rights here and around the world.

Our Impact

Throughout its history, Amnesty International worked in partnership with other organizations to win critical protections for individuals and systemic change affecting millions, including:

  • Tens of thousands of people have been freed after we campaigned against their unjust imprisonment for exercising their human rights.
  • We garnered the public support necessary for the adoption of the United Nations Convention Against Torture.
  • We generated the global support necessary to establish the International Criminal Court, so that individuals responsible for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity will face justice.
  • Our decades-long campaign has led to the death penalty being abolished in law or practice in two-thirds of the world’s countries – a sea change from when we started this work in the 1970s, when only 16 countries had abolished capital punishment.
  • Our research and vigorous campaigning led to the enactment of the U.S. Tribal Law and Order Act aimed at ending the epidemic of sexual assault of American Indian and Alaska Native women.

Who we are

Amnesty International USA has more than a million members and activists in all 50 states. Our members are part of a larger global movement of 10 million people in 150 countries. We are a democratically governed, grassroots membership organization, which means that our members vote on key policy issues and elect our Board of Directors.

Some of our members are experts on specific human rights issues, parts of the world, or advocacy areas, and they serve as volunteer leaders. Others are volunteer leaders of local Amnesty International groups in towns, universities, states, or regions of the country. Our elected Board members, staff, and members work together to lead the organization.

Learn more