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Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor


Our Mission

The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) champions universal values, including respect for the rule of law, democratic institutions, and human rights.  The Bureau’s work helps bolster democratic institutions, confront democratic backsliding, promote accountability, uphold internationally recognized labor standards, and advance the rights and equity of members of marginalized racial, ethnic, and religious communities, indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, and LGBTQI+ persons.

Key Topics

Democracy and Human Rights

Supporting democracy and promoting respect for individual rights promotes fundamental American values and helps create a more secure, stable, and prosperous world.

Learn More About the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Democracy and Human Rights

Business and Human Rights

The activities of businesses impact the lives of millions of people worldwide. Even small enterprises have value chains that span continents. This means that all businesses can play an important role in respecting and promoting human and labor rights.

Learn More About Business and Human Rights Business and Human Rights

International Labor Affairs

Protecting worker rights—especially the freedoms of association and collective bargaining through a healthy industrial relations system—is essential to building durable democracies as well as achieving sustainable growth for prosperity and a level playing field for American workers.

Learn More About International Labor Affairs International Labor Affairs

Programs and Grants

The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor funds programs in every region of the world to promote human rights, democracy, and transparent and accountable governance.

Learn More About Programs and Grants Programs and Grants

Fact Sheets and Releases

The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor manages and implements a variety of policies and initiatives to support democracy and promote respect for individual rights around the world.

Read Our Fact Sheets and Releases Fact Sheets and Releases

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future