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What are Human Rights?

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Human Rights are basic needs that all human beings have. Our basic needs never change, it is a need that all human beings everywhere have and so it represents a genuine human right. Genuine human rights can not apply in one country but not another. Some basic human rights are: the right to a home; the right to a decent amount of food; the right to clean water; the right to an education; the right to medical care.

Some countries disagree with this. In countries the idea of religious freedom is rejected or couples are only allowed one child.

The Second World War saw many people mistreated and abused. Military prisoners were tortured and civilians were imprisoned or murdered. The international community wanted a ser of principles to set out basic human needs and establish minimum entitlement.On 10th December 1948 the United Nations (UN) produced the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).


1. How would you define Human Rights?

2. List 5 things which you think are essential to life.

3. Write down as many rights as you can think of.

4. Can you place these Rights in order of importance (1= most important / 5= less)

5. Name two laws that relate to human rights?

6. Name the horrible world event that led to human rights being important.

7. Name two rights denied to people during the Holocaust.

8. Name one court that deals with Human Rights issues.

Group Work. Work as a group of 4. Open Appendix, complete the task How do Human Rights affect our life?


Vocabulary work.Put the correct words from a–d below in the text. Watch the video on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MePB_4xRu8 and check your answers.

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