Human Rights: The foundation of freedom, justice, and peace
It's been over 50 years since the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration on Human Rights. The Declaration, originally drafted by a Canadian, was written after World War II. The preamble to the declaration recognizes the inherent dignity and equal and inalienable rights of all people as the "foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world."
Since the Declaration was signed in 1948, member nations have debated and ratified conventions and declarations to eliminate discrimination against women, on the rights of the child, the rights of persons belonging to national or ethnic or religious or linguistic minorities. There are declarations and conventions on the rights of disabled persons; economic, social and cultural rights; and civil and political rights.
In 1919, the International Labour Organization, based in Geneva, was created to adopt standards to help ensure working conditions were protected around the world against inequality and injustice. Over 180 conventions and 185 recommendations have been adopted on social policy, and human and civil rights matters. Considered fundamental to workers are conventions on freedom of association and equality.
The General Assembly of the United Nations, in 1948, called on people of all nations to educate and promote respect for fundamental rights and freedoms but more importantly, to measure their growth and achievements against the standards set out in the Declaration. Similarly, we measure labour and employment laws against the conventions and resolutions of the International Labour Organization.
From the USW Health, Safety & Environment, Disability & Human Rights Conference 2006