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International Human Rights Day Virtual Event Promotes Peace and Understanding

World-renowned humanitarians meet online for an International Human Rights Day celebration hosted by United for Human Rights International.

United for Human Rights celebrated International Human Rights Day with a virtual conference on the theme, “Human Rights vs. XXI Century Challenges: Recovering the Fundamental Rights for Everyone.” 

The forum featured Ms. Rigoberta Menchú, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate for 1992. The Guatemala native was awarded for her work to secure the rights of indigenous people. In 1996, Menchú, a UN Ambassador for the world’s indigenous peoples, was instrumental in brokering peace between the government and guerrilla organizations.

“Making people aware of their human rights instills in them the ability to use their rights, to defend their rights and allows them to live their fundamental freedoms,” she said. “Human rights awareness is the only way to ensure that citizens are free and that their rights are respected.”

The event also included presentations by:

  • Chief Jim MacSween, Chief of York Regional Police, whose city is the most diverse in Canada’s multicultural tapestry. He presented a video of the county’s unique Human Rights Education classroom.
  • Laura Guercio, President of Legal Aid Worldwide, who spoke of the importance of the International Justice System in creating peace and building respect for human rights.
  • Agrippa O. Ezozo, President of the Africa Diaspora Foundation (USA), who spoke of human rights education as the key to the devastating social and political problems on the African continent.
  • Katsuya Kodama, President of the International Organization for the Promotion of Social Contribution (Japan). The son of a survivor of Hiroshima, Mr. Kodama believes a “human chain reaction” is the answer to “atomic chain reaction.”
  • Mary Shuttleworth, President of United for Human Rights and Youth for Human Rights International, who believes that Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 29, which emphasizes one’s responsibility to defend and protect the rights of others, is the most important of the 30 rights. It is only by each person embracing this responsibility that human rights will become a reality for all.

The event was hosted by Wil Seabrook, musician and founder of Rock for Human Rights, who also moderated the question-and-answer period at the end of the presentations. The entire event may be viewed on United for Human Rights’ Facebook.

United for Human Rights and its youth component Youth for Human Rights International are nonprofit organizations headquartered in Los Angeles, with over 150 groups, clubs and chapters around the world. They are dedicated to making human rights a fact through education on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. With its educational materials translated into 27 languages, United for Human Rights brings the message of human rights to more than 190 nations and territories. The Church of Scientology and Scientologists support United for Human Rights.

For more information on United for Human Rights and Youth for Human Rights International, watch an episode of Voices for Humanity on the Scientology Network.

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.

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