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Friday, December 10, 2010

Which world do you want to live in?

Two Worlds, a HealthRight video, shows how the choices we make to support human rights can lead to better health and stronger communities, or more discrimination and abuse. 

Over 60 years ago, the nations of the world came together and agreed on a set of common standards for human dignity and achievement: the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. International Human Rights Day marks the anniversary of that vital commitment for which all governments promised to strive. The Universal Declaration defines the rights that all people should be able to claim, and that no government should fail to protect or fulfill. This includes the right to health. Article 25 states that everyone has the right to “a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including…medical care.”

The right to health is also incorporated in other rights in the Declaration. The right to non-discrimination means no one can be denied health care because of their ethnicity or race or gender or religion or political belief.  The right to information and education applies to health, as well as the right to food, housing, and other factors that contribute to a healthy life.

Without human rights, suffering spreads.

On Human Rights Day, we celebrate the choices individuals, communities and governments make to uphold the right to health so communities can thrive.