What is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights or UDHR was created to lay out the minimum standard of fundamental rights that are available to all persons anywhere in the world. The declaration is the first international agreement that sets out core human rights and is based on the principles of universality, interdependence, equality and non-discrimination.
What are the rights protected by the UDHR?
The UNDR sets out 30 rights that are created to help people understand the world standard of fundamental rights available to them. These include the
- Right to Equality
- Freedom from Discrimination
- Right to Life, Liberty, Personal Security
- Freedom from Slavery
- Freedom from Torture and Degrading Treatment
- Right to Recognition as a Person before the Law
- Right to Equality before the Law
- Right to Remedy by Competent Tribunal
- Freedom from Arbitrary Arrest and Exile
- Right to Fair Public Hearing
- Right to be Considered Innocent until Proven Guilty
- Freedom from Interference with Privacy, Family, Home and Correspondence
- Right to Free Movement in and out of the Country
- Right to Asylum in other Countries from Persecution
- Right to a Nationality and the Freedom to Change It
- Right to Marriage and Family
- Right to Own Property
- Freedom of Belief and Religion
- Freedom of Opinion and Information
- Right of Peaceful Assembly and Association
- Right to Participate in Government and in Free Elections
- Right to Social Security
- Right to Desirable Work and to Join Trade Unions
- Right to Rest and Leisure
- Right to Adequate Living Standard
- Right to Education
- Right to Participate in the Cultural Life of Community
- Right to a Social Order that Articulates this Document
- Community Duties Essential to Free and Full Development
- Freedom from State or Personal Interference in the above Rights
What is the authority of the UDHR?
The UDHR is not legally binding on countries but has had significant influence in the creation of national and international documents to implement these fundamental rights in the countries. It has also given rise to a range of international agreements that are binding on the countries that ratify them, including the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
It is argued that the declaration has become a part of customary law due to its consistent use for over 60 years. The UDHR has been used as a catalyst to expand human rights protection for groups such as refugees, disabled persons, indigenous persons and women. It is important to note that there are no exemptions for persons with disabilities from enjoying these rights.