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The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Watch Genevieve talking about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
During the Second World War, there were terrible abuses of human rights. Many people were horrified by what had happened and wanted to make sure that humans would never have to suffer such abuses again. So in 1948, representatives from the 50 member states of the United Nations came together, led by diplomat and First Lady of the United States, Eleanor Roosevelt. Together they decided on a list of rights that should be enjoyed by people all over the world. You can read about some of these rights in the next step. If you could think of any more, please share them in the comments thread.

Read these five clauses from the Declaration of Human Rights. Which one do you think is the most important?

  • The Right to Equality. We are all born free. We all have our own thoughts and ideas. We should all be treated in the same way.

  • The Right to Trial. If we are put on trial this should be in public. The people who try us should not let anyone tell them what to do.

  • The Right to Marriage and Family. Every grown-up has the right to marry and have a family if they want to. Men and women have the same rights when they are married, and when they are separated.

  • The Right to Freedom of Thought. We all have the right to believe in what we want to believe, to have a religion, or to change it if we want.

  • The Right to Education. Education is a right. Primary school should be free. We should learn about the United Nations and how to get on with others. Our parents can choose what we learn.

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