UN and WHO join the World to mark Human Rights day

Written by Dr. Florence Akano

Every year on December 10th, Human Rights Day is marked to commemorate the day the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was approved by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948. (UDHR). The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a landmark declaration that affirms the intrinsic rights that every person has as a human being, regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinions, national or social origin, property, birth, or other position. It is the document that has been translated into most languages, with over 500 available.

The theme for this year is; Dignity, Freedom, and Justice for All.

On December 10, 2023, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights will mark its 75th anniversary. Before this significant day, on 10 December 2022, we will begin a year-long campaign to highlight the UDHR by emphasizing its heritage, relevance, and activity.

Since the 1948 ratification of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, more people throughout the world have come to recognize and protect these rights. Since then, it has served as the cornerstone of a growing system of protection for human rights that now pays particular attention to vulnerable populations including migrants, indigenous peoples, and people with disabilities.

However, the UDHR’s promise of equality in rights and dignity has consistently come under attack in recent years. The ideals and freedoms in the UDHR serve as benchmarks for our collective activities so that no one is left behind as the world faces new and continuous problems such as pandemics, wars, rising disparities, a morally bankrupt global financial system, racism, and climate change.

The campaign’s goal is to increase awareness of UDHR’s universality and the activity that surrounds it during the course of a year.


The right to health

WHO joined in the occasion too and made a heralded commitment to the right to health as a human right. Without universal health, there can be no dignity, freedom, or justice. The goal of the right to health is to guarantee that everyone, everywhere has access to cost-effective, high-quality healthcare. It also depends on the fulfilment of other human rights, such as food, education, shelter, and access to clean water and sanitation, as well as gender equality and other rights.

A person’s right to health is unaffected by their race, colour, sex, language, gender, handicap, sexual orientation, ethnicity, geography, religion, political opinion, nationality, or social origin, as well as their possessions, socioeconomic standing, or another status.

The right to health refers to the freedom to manage one’s own physical and mental well-being, including unrestricted access to sexual and reproductive health care and rights for women and girls. Violence, especially gender-based violence, violates everyone’s right to health and can have negative health effects on women’s and children’s lives.

Leaving no one behind is essential to the right to health. This implies that no one should be denied access to healthcare services because of their sexual orientation or their gender identity or expression.

The right to health calls for the abolition of prejudice in all contexts. Supporting local and federal governments in eliminating racial discrimination and associated health inequalities is necessary. In order to inform public health policies and guarantee that populations facing racial discrimination have access to comprehensive, culturally competent, and high-quality health care, this work incorporates human rights, equity, gender-responsive, and intercultural methods.

About the author

Dr. Florence Akano

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