Thursday 6 December 2018 – 10.00am to 12.30pm

IHREC Auditorium – Dublin

Declaring Our Human Rights!

The ESC Rights Initiative marks the 70th anniversary
of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The ESC Rights Initiative will host an event to mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the Irish Human Rights & Equality Commission offices on the week of International Human Rights Day December 10th 2018.

The purpose of the event is to illustrate the contribution of human rights principals, instruments and proclamations to the achievement of equality and social justice in Ireland. The event will highlight the resolution and accomplishments of groups and individuals in the continuing battle for human dignity and fundamental freedoms, with a special focus on the indivisibility of the all human rights and the need to strengthen the protection of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

The event will consist of short inputs, stories, songs and poems by practitioners, artists, academics and victims of human rights violations. New publications will be presented including the 2018 European Anti Poverty Network on-line Handbook: “A Human Rights Approach to Poverty”.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted in 1948 as a moral beacon for a world emerging from the unconscionable horrors of war and social degradation visited on nations, communities and families across the world over the preceding decades. The concept of a Universal Declaration of Human Rights was first shaped within a specially convened Philosophers’ Committee that included leading thinkers, including Mahatma Ghandi and Aldous Huxley. Their work was then passed to the United Nations Human Rights Commission chaired by the redoubtable Eleanor Roosevelt where a human rights consensus was shaped by the 58 member states.

It is important to remember that the UN Human Rights Commission envisaged 3 parts to the human rights project: a general set of principles, the codification of these principles into law, and a practical means of application. Many countries, including Ireland, still struggle to implement the final part of this human rights paradigm and even the fundamental principles set out in the Universal Declaration are in danger of being set aside or discarded in these times of geopolitical turmoil and political uncertainty. It is therefore proper and timely that we acknowledge and celebrate the massive achievement in setting down the global ethic that is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in this 70th anniversary year of its establishment.