The coronavirus pandemic deepened entrenched inequalities and took an especially heavy toll on the most vulnerable, but in a grim year there were some notable wins for human rights, Amnesty International said on Wednesday.

From Black Lives Matter protests showcasing people power to climate lawsuits holding corporations to account and a groundswell of action to fight violence against women, the rights group highlighted bright spots in its annual report on the state of human rights worldwide.

Here are five of the human rights wins and positive trends identified by Amnesty:

  1. Black Lives Matter protests
    The death of George Floyd spurred worldwide protests against racial inequality that threw a spotlight on racism and heaped pressure on leaders to act, bringing change including reforms to policing policies and funds to tackle racial inequality.
  2. Climate litigation gains traction
    There has been a “significant increase” in climate litigation targeting governments and corporations, Amnesty said, as campaigners turn to the law to enforce action to protect the climate and curb emissions.
  3. Nations crack down on gendered abuse
    Numerous countries moved to toughen laws on violence against women in 2020 as the pandemic fueled domestic abuse worldwide.
  4. Women gain abortion and pregnancy rights
    Argentina became the first big country in Latin America to legalise abortion in a triumph for women’s rights campaigners who prevailed over the Roman Catholic church, while Northern Ireland and South Korea also decriminalised terminations
  5. Migrant workers break free from tied labour system
    Qatar abolished rules requiring migrant workers to get permission from their employer to change jobs and brought in a new universal minimum wage, after it faced sharp criticism over exploitation of labourers building stadiums for the 2022 World Cup.

Read the full article about human rights wins from the Thomson Reuters Foundation at Eco-Business.