The Spanish hotel chain, Room Mate Hotels, will place copies of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in all its hotel rooms worldwide, starting 10 December, Human Rights Day.
The Universal Declaration holds the Guinness World Record for most translated document in the world and is available in 400 dialects and languages.
Room Mate employs workers of more than 20 nationalities, of which over 50 per cent of women, and is a member of the United Nations Global Compact. As such, they have committed to promote and respect the human rights of their employees in countries in Europe and the Americas where they are located.
“At Room Mate Hotels we promote all human values. We fight discrimination and we fight for equal opportunities,” said the man behind this unique initiative, Kike Sarasola, President and founder of Room Mate Hotels.
An avid world traveller and firm believer in UN and human rights principles, Sarasola said the idea to place UDHR booklet in his hotel rooms came about during a trip to New York, United States.
“When I was in the hotel I realized that I had nothing to read. At that moment I began to think about which publication would be interesting enough for the whole world,” Sarasola explained. “The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is something we all know of, but have rarely held in our hands or taken the time to read.”
The spokesperson of the UN Human Rights Office, Rupert Colville, welcomed Sarasola’s initiative.
“This is a really nice initiative. The Universal Declaration is a wonderful text and holds the world record for the number of language translations,” he said. “Yet not nearly enough people have actually read it. We hope other organizations and groups will follow the example of the Room Mate Hotel chain.”
6 December 2012