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Human Rights Day 2020: Build Back Better

Preach Humanity to Practice Human Rights

On 10 December we celebrate human rights, in commemoration of the day when the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. That Declaration forms the backbone of the human rights architecture of our societies, where each of us – without discrimination – has the right to live and thrive in peace and safety. As you read this article, there are people trapped in conflict zones; men, women and children who die while seeking protection; people who are left at the margin of society and discriminated; people who continue to be repressed, beaten or killed because they seek the truth or just express themselves. People who are still locked-up in their disability, or who are trafficked and exploited. 10 December is an opportunity to reaffirm the importance of human rights in re-building the world we want, the need for global solidarity as well as our interconnectedness and shared humanity. It is celebrated to honor the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948. This was the first-ever global document on human rights which outlined the fundamental rights of all human beings that need to be protected universally.

But none of this is inevitable and we all have a crucial role to play, no matter how small.

This year’s theme for the human rights day is Recover Better – Stand Up for Human Rights

This year’s Human Rights Day theme relates to the COVID-19 pandemic and focuses on the need to build back better by ensuring Human Rights are central to recovery efforts.

The global COVID-19 crisis has been fuelled by deepening poverty, rising inequalities, structural and entrenched discrimination and other gaps in human rights protection. Only measures to close these gaps and advance human rights can ensure we fully recover to a world that is better and more resilient, just and sustainable.

Poverty, inequalities, discrimination, exclusion, environmental degradation have fuelled the human tragedy that the world has seen unfold. These and other gaps in human rights protection have collided with entrenched political, social and economic crises around the world, making societies more vulnerable to the corona virus.

As numerous countries around the globe have entered their second wave of the pandemic, it has become abundantly clear that, once the crisis over, we simply cannot go back to how the world was before. From this shared tragedy comes an opportunity: for humanity to build back better, we must put human rights at the heart of the recovery.

The pandemic has reminded us all of a simple truth: a world that fully respects the human rights of all is a world better prepared to deal with and recover from all crises.

Wherever there is discrimination, we can step forward to help safeguard someone’s right to live free from fear and abuse. We can raise our voices for decent values. We can join others to publicly lobby for better leadership, better laws and greater respect for human dignity.

We want to encourage, galvanize and recognize what you do in your daily life, along with millions of other people around the world, to stand up for human rights – in your workplace, on the sports field, at school, in the street, wherever you are.

We all need AND can do something to defend human rights. Join us. Together we can change the course. We can make a difference!

By Ms. Nehal Puri, 1st year, BBA, SCMS Noida

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