Shine Your Light for Human Rights

A series of 14 events across seven time zones spotlighting the centrality of rights to the daily lives of people everywhere.


Shine your light for the rights of migrants

10 December 2018, Marrakesh

The UDHR Preamble asserts the “inherent dignity and the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family [which] is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world”.

The signing of Global Compact on Migration on Human Rights Day marks a watershed moment for global protection of migrants. The High Commissioner will lead a unique celebratory event in the context of the global conference convened to finalise the Compact.

10 December 2018 - Speaking in Marrakesh, where over 160 Governments signed up to the first-ever global migration pact on Monday, UN Secretary General António Guterres said that the Compact is an important step towards safety and dignity for millions of people which “sets out in practical terms how Member States and other stakeholders can respect, protect and fulfil the human rights of all migrants, in line with the Universal Declaration.”

Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, reinforced the Secretary General’s comments, by reminding the audience that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was forged in the crisis of the post-war period. The Declaration was a guide to lead societies away from “conflict, inequality and turmoil,” and serves as a “a living document, just as powerful and valid today as it was in the ashes and rubble of global destruction.”

President of the General Assembly, Maria Fernanda Espinosa, contextualized the Declaration by reminding us that she had, just a few weeks earlier, placed a wreath before the “Wall of Death” in Auschwitz, a moment she will never forget: "This sentiment, I imagine, was shared by the original architects of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Having borne witness to the atrocities of the Second World War, they, like those who crafted the Charter of the United Nations, understood that human life and human dignity had to be protected, everywhere and at all costs.”

The UN High Commissioner reminds us “States have not always upheld the commitments they made 70 years ago: many horrific tragedies have occurred, and should never be forgotten. But overall, a new and unprecedented wave of freedoms has enabled great progress in almost every society, as women and men rose up, inspired by the Universal Declaration, to demand their human rights.”

The Migration Compact reflects the values safeguarded by the UDHR. It was clear to the delegates at the meetings that the Universal Declaration is a living document, “just as powerful and valid today as it was in the ashes and rubble of global destruction”, the HC concluded.

Please read the HC statement at the high-level event to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

  • I will respect your rights regardless of who you are. I will uphold your rights even when I disagree with you
  • When anyone’s human rights are denied, everyone's rights are undermined, so I will stand up
  • I will raise my voice. I will take action. I will use my rights to stand up for your rights.

people have stood up for human rights

We can all be Human Rights Champions

Tweet, Instagram or YouTube your action using the hashtag #Standup4humanrights.

Spread the word