United Nation Universal Declaration of Human Rights
The United Nations (UN) came into being in 1945, shortly after the end of World War II.
The purpose of the UN is to bring peace to all nations of the world. After World War II, a committee was formed of persons known as the Chair of the United Nations Human Rights Commission. Eleanor Roosevelt, the wife of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt, wrote a particular document which “declares” the rights that everyone in the entire world should have—the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Today there are 192 member states of the UN, all of whom have signed on in agreement with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Where Do Universal Rights Begin?
“In small places, close to home—so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any maps of the world. Yet they are the world of the individual person; the neighborhood he lives in; the school or college he attends; the factory, farm or office where he works. Such are the places where every man, woman, and child seeks equal justice, equal opportunity, equal dignity without discrimination. Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.”
—Eleanor Roosevelt, the wife of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Chair of the United Nations Commission, wrote the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948.
Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility. For the person who is unwilling to grow up, the person who does not want to carry his weight, this is a frightening prospect.”
—Eleanor Roosevelt, American Delegate to the United Nations
Called “First Lady of the World” by President Truman for her lifelong humanitarian achievements, Roosevelt worked to the end of her life to gain acceptance and implementation of the rights outlined in the Declaration. The legacy of her words and her work appears in the constitutions of scores of nations and in an evolving body of international law that now protects the rights of men and women across the world.
“Do what you feel in your heart to be right—for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do and damned if you don’t.” —Eleanor Roosevelt
Born out of the atrocities and enormous loss of life during World War II, the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed in 1948 to provide a common understanding of what everyone’s rights are. It forms the basis for a world built on freedom, justice, and peace.
This simplified version of the 30 Articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has been created especially for young people.
1. We Are All Born Free & Equal. All are born free. We all have our thoughts and ideas. We should all be treated in the same way.
2. Don’t Discriminate. These rights belong to everybody, whatever our differences.
3. The Right to Life. We all have the right to life and to live in freedom and safety.
4. No Slavery. Nobody has any right to make us be held in slavery or servitude. We cannot make anyone our slave. The slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.
5. No Torture. Nobody has any right to hurt us or to torture us.
6. You Have Rights No Matter Where You Go. I am a person just like you!
7. We’re All Equal Before the Law. The law is the same for everyone. It must treat us all fairly.
8. Your Human Rights Are Protected by Law. We can all ask for the law to help us when we are not treated fairly.
9. No Unfair Detainment. Nobody has the right to put us in prison without good reason and keep us there, or to send us away from our country.
10. The Right to Trial. If we are put on trial this should be in public. The people who try us should not let anyone tell them what to do.
11. We’re Always Innocent till Proven Guilty. Nobody should be blamed for doing something until it is proven. When people say we did a bad thing we have the right to show it is not valid.
12. The Right to Privacy. No one should try to harm our good name. Nobody has the right to come into our home, open our letters, or bother us or our family without a good reason.
13. Freedom to Move. We all have the right to go where we want in our own country and to travel as we wish.
14. The Right to Seek a Safe Place to Live. If we are frightened of being badly treated in our own country, we all have the right to run away to another country to be safe.
15. Entitlement to a Nationality. We all have the right to belong to a country.
16. Marriage and Family. Every grown-up has the right to marry and have a family if they want to. Men and women have the same rights when they are married, and when they are separated.
17. The Right to Your Things. Everyone has the right to own things or share them. Nobody should take our things from us without a good reason.
18. Freedom of Thought. We all have the right to believe in what we want to think, to have a religion, or to change it if we want.
19. Freedom of Expression. We should have the right to make up our own minds, to think about what we like, to say what we believe, and to share our ideas with other people.
20. The Right to Public Assembly. We all have the right to meet our friends and to work together in peace to defend our rights. Nobody can make us join a group if we don’t want to.
21. The Right to Democracy. We all have the right to take part in the government of our country. Every grown-up should be allowed to choose their own leaders.
22. Social Security. We all have the right to affordable housing, medicine, education, and childcare, enough money to live on and medical help if we are ill or old.
23. Workers’ Rights. Every grown-up has the right to do a job, to a fair wage for their work, and to join a trade union.
24. The Right to Play. We all have the right to rest from work and to relax.
25. Food and Shelter for All. We all have the right to a good life. Mothers and children, people who are old, unemployed or disabled, and all people have the right to be cared for.
26. The Right to Education. Education is a right. Primary school should be free. We should learn about the United Nations and how to get on with others. Our parents can choose what we learn.
27. Copyright. Copyright is a special law that protects one’s artistic creations and writings; others cannot make copies without permission. We all have the right to our way of life and to enjoy the good things that art, science, and learning bring.
28. A Fair and Free World. There must be proper order so we can all enjoy rights and freedoms in our own country and across the globe.
29. Responsibility. We have a duty to other people, and we should protect their rights and freedoms.
30. No One Can Take Away Your Human Rights.
In conclusion, human rights are not a privilege; they are your rights. If you believe that your Human Rights have been violated in the form of discrimination, give Massey and Duffy a call for a free consultation.