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Headsup about Human Rights

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

An on-line debate for young people about Human Rights has started on the Headsup site, Meg has contributed the following. If you are a young person please visit: http://www.headsup.org.uk/content/default.asp?page=s178

 

 

The UK Government is committed to promoting human rights worldwide, and to ending poverty.  We can’t just do one or other: we must do both.

 

People who are poor do not enjoy human rights. Their daily battle to survive means kids don’t go to school; they can’t give them proper clothes, let alone pay school fees. If they or their kids get sick they can’t pay for a doctor. Many can’t read or write, so a lot of jobs are ruled out.  

 

Destitute girls and women are especially hard hit.  They are the last people to get education, work, food and healthcare. They are also most at risk of physical and sexual abuse and less likely to get help from the police or the courts.

 

We have to do two things. We should encourage poor countries to live up to their human rights promises, ensuring that the law protects everyone, not just the rich. They have to make sure kids go to school and not into sweatshops. Importantly, they have to guarantee that people get access to food, water and basic health care.

 

But we also need to help these countries keep their promises. We do this through aid as well as through trade. We don’t work alone; we achieve more by working with a range of international organisations with experience and expertise in human rights and development.

 

I think it’s great that so many young people care - we all benefit when people enjoy their human rights, and we all suffer when they don’t. I’m really pleased to participate in this debate and look forward to reading your views.

 


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