Global human rights give us a guide, but without champions in governments, institutions, companies and among people in general, violations have risen and the cost to human life has been significant.
Over 68.5 million people are forcibly displaced. They have lost their homes, and are forced to leave villages, cities and sometimes countries due to persecution, war and genocide. Half of them are children.
The majority of people are displaced within their countries of birth. The countries considered to be most severely affected are Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Myanmar and Somalia.
Many of the world’s wealthiest and most stable democracies, such as the USA, Australia, France and the UK, have done little to encourage human rights abroad and have detracted from the moral imperative to uphold human rights – even within their own diverse population groups (e.g. erosion of disability rights in the UK, forced sterilisation of First Nations people in Canada, targeted violence towards Black populations in the US, erosion of workers rights in Continental Europe).
‘Unpopular’ minorities (mostly people of colour) continue to be subjugated to high levels of verbal and physical violence, and social cohesion is regularly undermined using policies, processes and values antagonistic to the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights formulated 70 years ago.
This blog post is in recognition of the children and adults around the world who continue to face persecution, genocide and violence and are unable to live in safe areas, form social bonds and have the opportunity to study, play and plan for a future. Perhaps in 10 years time, we will have a more positive future to report.