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What are Human Rights?


Some Information About Human Rights

Human rights are the rights that all human beings are entitled to regardless of the kind of person you are or where you come from. Every person is entitled to human rights. So, human rights are the things to which we are all entitled by virtue of our being human. They belong to all of us, not just for some special persons or groups.

Human rights have been formally established for everyone since 1948 by the United Nations, represented by the United Nations Human Rights Commission, under the chairmanship of Eleanor Roosevelt, who lead the creation of the famous Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, every individual person is entitled to certain basic human rights and fundamental freedoms, for the simple fact that they are human beings.

So human rights belong to you, the same way they belong to your friends and even enemies alike. Human rights do not belong to only good people – they  protect all people whether good or bad.

          Human Rights are not Privileges 

They are called “human rights” rather than privileges because; privileges depend on the whims of others who are more powerful than we are, and could decide whether to respect our rights or not.

Human rights are very important to all of us – as they exist for our protection and well-being. The aim is to protect us against vices such as discrimination, oppression, injustice, violence, intolerance and slavery.

They  form the foundation for a society built on fairness, freedom, justice and peace, and aims to promote social progress and better standard of life for everyone.

The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was signed on December 10th , 1948 provided a common understanding for all nations of what everyone’s rights are, so as to prevent a repeat of the atrocities and unnecessary loss of lives that happened during world war II.

In Ghana our human rights are protected by the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Ghana. Chapter five of the document out lines the fundamental rights and freedoms of all individuals and groups living in Ghana.


Some key values behind human rights worth noting include: Respect for the individual, Dignity, Equality, Tolerance, Freedom, Justice, Fairness, participation and Responsibility.


It is very important to remember that everyone needs the protection that Human Rights provides regardless of who you are or where you come from. The reality is that even if you don’t need it today, you might need it in the future.

Remember: it is very important that you know the full range of your human rights so that you can claim and enjoy them more effectively.

That is why Stand Ghana is very keen on promoting human rights education in Ghana.

Written By: Rose Mary Kayi

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