Human Rights

The Children’s Health and Human Rights Partnership works to uphold the administration and enforcement of current human rights laws and treaties. Our efforts encourage, support, and defend human rights that have already been secured by the current Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and existing international human rights laws and treaties.

Canada has a long history of acting with leadership and courage to ensure that human rights are safeguarded. John Peters Humphrey OC, a Canadian legal scholar, was the principal drafter of what became the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In 1991, Canada became a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Forced non- therapeutic genital cutting of minors violates these documents as well as other United Nations covenants (Zavales, 1995, p.11). The existing treaties and laws we educate and promote enforcement of include:

  • The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), adopted by Canada in 1948

  • The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) – ratified by Canada in December 1991.
    “Canada played an instrumental role in drafting and promoting the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The Convention outlines the responsibilities governments have to ensure a child’s right to survival, healthy development, protection and participation in all matters that affect them. The four general principles of the Convention are: non-discrimination, the best interests of the child, the right to life, survival and development, and respect for the views of the child.”

  • The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, enacted by Canada in 1982

Equality Rights:

15. (1) Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.