Logo Human Rights Day 2012: My voice counts

Human Rights Day 2012 - Feature stories

Many inspirational stories on inclusion and the right to participate in public life throughout this year have been featured on our website and can be found here.

 

New global data on human rights showcased in Sustainable Development Goals Report
New global data on human rights showcased in Sustainable Development Goals Report
High rates of discrimination around the globe, and increasing numbers of civilians dying in conflict zones are some of the human rights data measures reflected in the annual progress report on the Sustainable Development Goals.
14 July 2020
Realising children’s rights through a healthy environment
Realising children’s rights through a healthy environment
“The survival, health, well-being and development of children depends on an environment that is safe, clean, healthy and sustainable,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet. She was speaking at the Human Rights Council, during the annual full day meeting of the rights of the child.
7 July 2020
Security Council debates peace operations and human rights
Security Council debates peace operations and human rights
“Human rights are central to the Council’s mandate to maintain international peace and security”, the High Commissioner told the Security Council during an open debate on peace operation and human rights. She stressed that currently 12 UN peace operations have human rights components that powerfully contribute to better protection; bring missions closer to the people they serve, and foster the capacities of governments to advance inclusive development, rule of law, and peace.
7 July 2020
HC tells business leaders: build back better by focusing on the vulnerable
HC tells business leaders: build back better by focusing on the vulnerable
“Business needs to look beyond the generic categories of “stakeholders” – employees, suppliers, customers, communities – to give due consideration to those who are most vulnerable,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said. She made her statement during a virtual gathering of more than 20,000 business, and sustainability leaders from across the globe.
18 June 2020
High Commissioner calls for strong action to combat racial discrimination in law enforcement and across society
High Commissioner calls for strong action to combat racial discrimination in law enforcement and across society
"We need schools and universities that are free of bias; economies that give truly equal opportunities and fair treatment to all; political institutions that are more responsive and inclusive; justice systems which are truly just," the High Commissioner told the Human Rights Council, in an urgent debate. "Pervasive racism corrodes institutions of government, entrenches inequality and underlies so many violations of human rights. The cycles of impunity which have permitted this to happen must end."
17 June 2020
Roadmap for digital cooperation is "collective guide to ensure digital technologies better serve humanity"
Roadmap for digital cooperation is "collective guide to ensure digital technologies better serve humanity"
The High Commissioner spoke at an event on implementing the Secretary-General's roadmap to digital cooperation. She also said the roadmap can "guide us at the United Nations as we strengthen our efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and protect the human rights of all."
12 June 2020
To build “resilient and inclusive” societies, standing together with migrants is essential
To build “resilient and inclusive” societies, standing together with migrants is essential
With the COVID-19 pandemic deepening existing structural inequalities for migrants, according to Pia Oberoi, standing together with migrants is an essential part of “building back better.” Pia is the Senior Advisor on Migration and Human Rights for the South-East Asia Regional Office of UN Human Rights.
11 June 2020
Philippines: Report details widespread human rights violations and persistent impunity
Philippines: Report details widespread human rights violations and persistent impunity
A new report by UN Human Rights highlights long-standing and acute human rights concerns in the Philippines, including killings, arbitrary detentions and the vilification of dissent.
4 June 2020
Defending rights of Iranian prisoners amidst the COVID-19 pandemic
Defending rights of Iranian prisoners amidst the COVID-19 pandemic
In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, prominent Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh’s hunger strike in detention has brought public attention and outcry to conditions in the country’s prisons. Her husband, Reza Khandan, explains more.
21 May 2020
High Commissioner discusses coming out of COVID-19 lock-downs with Geneva press
High Commissioner discusses coming out of COVID-19 lock-downs with Geneva press
Michelle Bachelet’s opening remarks at a virtual press conference with the UN correspondents’ association in Geneva on the human rights ramifications of coming out of lock-downs and other human rights issues relating to COVID-19.
14 May 2020
Voices from the Field: Protecting human rights in Moldova amidst COVID-19
Voices from the Field: Protecting human rights in Moldova amidst COVID-19
“Our country was already suffering, and the pandemic is just worsening the situation,” says Cristina Mardari, a UN Human Rights staffer from Moldova. She shares her experience from lockdown, and how she and her colleagues are still working to protect and promote human rights in the country.
30 April 2020
Training helps experts handle increases in gender-based violence
Training helps experts handle increases in gender-based violence
One side effect of emergency lockdown measures because of the COVID-19 pandemic has been an increase in reports of domestic violence. In South America, where reports have increase by 70 percent in some countries, UN Human Rights has been working with judges to better help women caught in the cycle.
29 April 2020
We are all in this together: UNSG delivers policy brief on COVID-19 and human rights
We are all in this together: UNSG delivers policy brief on COVID-19 and human rights
Human rights can and must guide COVID-19 response and recovery, according to the latest brief by UN Secretary-General António Guterres. By respecting human rights, Guterres says, “we will build more effective and inclusive solutions for the emergency of today and the recovery for tomorrow.”
23 April 2020
"Finding Hope": High Commissioner Bachelet calls for urgent national measures – and global solidarity – on COVID
"Finding Hope": High Commissioner Bachelet calls for urgent national measures – and global solidarity – on COVID
The COVID-19 pandemic lays bare some of the most glaring vulnerabilities of our societies," Bachelet wrote in a special TIME takeout. "Millions of the people at greatest risk of contagion are those whose needs are often overlooked". To uphold their rights to life and health—and prevent the pandemic from spreading — we need human rights-based action.
16 April 2020
COVID is “a colossal test of leadership” requiring coordinated action, High Commissioner tells Human Rights Council
COVID is “a colossal test of leadership” requiring coordinated action, High Commissioner tells Human Rights Council
Michelle Bachelet called for urgent and detailed action to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic from creating “ even wider inequalities and extensive suffering”
9 April 2020
Act now to stop COVID-19 ‘rampaging through prisons’
Act now to stop COVID-19 ‘rampaging through prisons’
Bachelet calls on governments to take urgent action to stop COVID-19 sweeping through places of detention where people are often extremely vulnerable to infection.
25 March 2020
Coronavirus impact on human rights
Coronavirus impact on human rights
Bachelet urges States to ensure human rights are front and centre in their response to COVID-19, protecting the most vulnerable both medically and economically.
6 March 2020
Reflecting on 25 years of women’s rights action
Reflecting on 25 years of women’s rights action
Twenty-five years after the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, experts celebrate that document’s vision of women’s rights and discuss its continued relevance to address remaining and new challenges.
6 March 2020
High Commissioner updates the Human Rights Council on human rights concerns, and progress, across the world
High Commissioner updates the Human Rights Council on human rights concerns, and progress, across the world
Raising many serious concerns – including the COVID-19 epidemic – the High Commissioner emphasised that upholding human rights can strengthen the effectiveness of policies and boost societies’ resilience
27 February 2020
Threats to human rights are rising – but so are solutions, High Commissioner says
Threats to human rights are rising – but so are solutions, High Commissioner says
Opening the 43rd session of the Human Rights Council, Michelle Bachelet said “Today’s turbulent political landscape requires usable policy tools that are rooted in experience, with a proven track record. These tools exist.”
24 February 2020
Multilateralism in action: cooperating with the OSCE to prevent crises and uphold human rights
Multilateralism in action: cooperating with the OSCE to prevent crises and uphold human rights
“We can choose to work for peace – or we can watch as grievances fester and build up, until violence escalates into conflict,” the High Commissioner said at the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. “Peace depends on us.” She emphasised the increasing effectiveness of cooperation between the Office and OSCE bodies.
20 February 2020
Justice for past crimes can build a shared future
Justice for past crimes can build a shared future
The High Commissioner briefs the Security Council on experiences with transitional justice across the world
13 February 2020
Impartial, independent rule of law is vital to sound societies
Impartial, independent rule of law is vital to sound societies
The rule of law makes institutions accountable for upholding human rights and the fair delivery of public services. And it empowers all individuals – including those who suffer entrenched discrimination -- to claim their rights. But the independence and impartiality of the judiciary is coming under threat in many countries.
6 February 2020
Human rights education helps protect all societies from the mindset that produced the Nazi Holocaust
Human rights education helps protect all societies from the mindset that produced the Nazi Holocaust
75 years after the liberation of the extermination camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau, and the end of the devastating crimes of the Holocaust, violence and discrimination continue to be directed against Jews and others.
27 January 2020
High Commissioner Bachelet launches a 2020 funding appeal based on fundamental new challenges
High Commissioner Bachelet launches a 2020 funding appeal based on fundamental new challenges
Total extra-budgetary resources required for 2020 amount to US$ 375.5 million, for a programme the High Commissioner termed “unmatched in the history of this Office”
15 January 2020
Venezuela: High Commissioner Bachelet details plans for new human rights assistance
Venezuela: High Commissioner Bachelet details plans for new human rights assistance
Briefing to the Human Rights Council on important human rights issues in Venezuela, and prospects for a newly signed human rights cooperation agreement
18 December 2019
Bachelet: International Migrants Day
Bachelet: International Migrants Day
On International Migrants Day, High Commissioner Bachelet reflects on the human desire to belong, and calls for celebration of our shared humanity.
18 December 2019
Report on Chile crisis describes multiple police violations and calls for reforms
Report on Chile crisis describes multiple police violations and calls for reforms
Report on the mass protests and state of emergency in Chile concludes the police and army failed to adhere to international norms and standards, and calls for reforms.
13 December 2019
Urging business actors to grasp the scope of climate-related impacts on human rights
Urging business actors to grasp the scope of climate-related impacts on human rights
At the COP25 in Madrid, the High Commissioner detailed human rights-based actions that States, businesses and investors should employ
9 December 2019
Young people
Young people's advocacy and activism for climate justice brings us all hope for climate action
At the COP25 in Madrid, the High Commissioner applauds youth movements for climate justice, pledging help to uphold young people's human rights
9 December 2019
Bachelet: We salute youth for standing up on climate
Bachelet: We salute youth for standing up on climate
We owe a debt of gratitude to the millions of children, teenagers and young adults who have been standing up and speaking out more and more loudly about the climate crisis facing our planet.
9 December 2019
Our climate crisis makes labour rights and activism even more crucial, the High Commissioner said at the COP25
Our climate crisis makes labour rights and activism even more crucial, the High Commissioner said at the COP25
Trade unions' combat for dignity will be invaluable to ensure that adaptation to climate change creates new jobs, and lifts people out of poverty.
8 December 2019
The Climate Vulnerable Forum is crucial for climate action, High Commissioner says
The Climate Vulnerable Forum is crucial for climate action, High Commissioner says
Climate change threatens people's livelihoods, communities, health, development – even their lives, and nowhere is this clearer than in small island States and other members of the Climate Vulnerable Forum.
2 December 2019
Engaging business and investment institutions to end human trafficking and slavery
Engaging business and investment institutions to end human trafficking and slavery
There’s a new realisation that financial institutions may also be involved in slavery and trafficking – and can help end these crimes, which currently victimise “one in every 185 people alive”.
27 November 2019
Governments need to step up action for human rights in business activities
Governments need to step up action for human rights in business activities
We need stronger frameworks for accountability and governance, to ensure business activities don't involve exploitation of workers and users of their products; land grabs and other abuses of the rights of local communities; increased inequalities and damage to our right to a healthy environment.
25 November 2019
Bachelet calls for "a multilateralism which expresses people’s needs, and which protects and advances their human rights"
Bachelet calls for "a multilateralism which expresses people’s needs, and which protects and advances their human rights"
"If Governments and security forces treat their people as enemies, enemies is what they may become," High Commissioner Bachelet said, of today's mass protests. "The excessive use of force breaks bones, breaks lives, and it also breaks trust – in institutions; in leaders; in the rule of law."
22 November 2019
Ceremonies in Geneva and New York underscore the urgency of stronger action to uphold children’s rights
Ceremonies in Geneva and New York underscore the urgency of stronger action to uphold children’s rights
Bridging two events on either side of the Atlantic to mark 30 years of the child rights convention, High Commissioner Bachelet emphasised the need for action to stem the “deprivation, misery, exploitation and violence” so many children suffer.
20 November 2019
Mass protests cry out for more effective and sustainable policies and governance based on human rights
Mass protests cry out for more effective and sustainable policies and governance based on human rights
High Commissioner Bachelet looks at the human rights issues at the core of today’s mass protests -- and suggests ways they can be solved
19 November 2019
Accelerating the world
Accelerating the world's promise of accountability for sexual and reproductive health and rights
At the Nairobi Summit to mark the 25th anniversary of the ground-breaking International Conference on Population and Development, the High Commissioner called for a “more explicit human rights approach, to hold ourselves and our Governments accountable”
13 November 2019
Chris Mburu, winner, 2019 Eleanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award
Chris Mburu, winner, 2019 Eleanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award
Right to education defender and former UN Human Rights staff, Chris Mburu, receives the 2019 Eleanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award.
7 November 2019