Human Rights Day 2017

Featured Content December 6, 2017 - Celebrated December 10th each year, commemorates the anniversary of when the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was proclaimed


“Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the
world ...”

On December 10, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly met in Paris, France and adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The UDHR was the first universal standard of achievements for all people and nations, stating that all human beings have certain inherent and inalienable rights to be universally protected. This document has been translated into over 500 languages.

President Truman issued the first Presidential Proclamation for Human Rights Day on December 10, 1949, Proclamation 2866, and in 1958 President Eisenhower issued the first proclamation for Human Rights Week to be held from December 10 – 17. Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt of the United States, chair of the drafting committee, holding a Universal Declaration of Human Rights poster in English. UN Photo (1949)

This year, Human Rights Day kicks off a year-long campaign to mark the upcoming 70th anniversary of the UDHR.



Did you know that the U.S. Department of State has an Internet Freedom and Business & Human Rights (IFBHR) Section within the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor that leads U.S. government policy to promote and protect human rights online as well as with business, globally? Find out more about IFBHR and what they do on the State Department’s website.


Related Legislation

22 U.S.C. 2304 - Human Rights and Security Assistance
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75 Stat. 424 – Act for International Development of 1961 (Foreign Assistance Act of 1961)
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88 Stat. 1978 - Trade Reform Act, (Trade Act of 1974)
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78 Stat. 241 Civil Rights Act of 1964
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29 U.S.C. 623 - Prohibition of Age Discrimination
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42 U.S.C. 126 - Equal Opportunity Act for Individuals with Disabilities
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Resources