The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has announced a $15 million commitment in support of efforts to protect human rights and reform the justice system in Mexico.
The funding includes $5 million over two years in support of ongoing work to advance criminal justice reform and a new national prosecutor's office, and $10 million to establish a fund that will support the critical role of state-level human rights work. The foundation is working with local partners to design the fund, which will begin awarding grants in 2020, with a focus on strengthening state-based civil society organizations.
The funding represents the foundation's final commitment to its human rights work in Mexico; it plans to close its office there in December 2020. Since 1984, the foundation has awarded more than eleven hundred grants totaling nearly $200 million to organizations and individuals, both inside and outside the country's borders, whose work was intended to benefit the country.
"Our grantee partners across Mexico confront challenges every day in protecting and advancing human rights," said Sharon Bissell, director of the foundation's Mexico office. "They are highly experienced, innovative, quick, compassionate, and inclusive in their strategies. This new commitment of $15 million will enable them to continue their important work in the short term and to strengthen voices from the field."