At its 171st Period of Sessions, held in February 2019, to expand and deepen the existing institutional framework for monitoring the protection of the rights of older persons, the IACHR decided to create the Thematic Rapporteurship on the Rights of Older Persons. Previously, in March 2017, the Unit on the Rights of Persons had been created, during the 162nd Period of Sessions and within the framework of the Strategic Plan 2017-2021; after a diagnosis that highlighted that the protection of the rights of older people continues to be a priority challenge in the region and, in turn, demands close monitoring by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), also considering the adoption in 2015 of the Inter-American Convention on the Human Rights of Older Persons.


In October 2017, the IACHR invited civil society organizations, states, and other users of the Inter-American Human Rights System to participate in the public consultation regarding the Unit on the Rights of Older Persons. The main objective of the consultation was to receive inputs and suggestions on priority action areas to prepare the work plan of the Thematic Unit for the period 2018-2019. Other advocacy and awareness-raising activities followed in successive sessions.

The IACHR, in its communiqué 268/18, recognizes that the full validity of all the rights, guarantees and mechanisms provided for in the instrument is of fundamental importance for the protection of the human rights of older persons in the region and urges all States OAS members to sign and ratify the Convention for the Protection of the Rights of Older Persons, as part of efforts to universalize the inter-American human rights system, in such a way that all treaties and conventions protect all persons from the region