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Human Rights Day

Quick Facts

Human Rights Day is an occasion for people worldwide to know and consider the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Local names

NameLanguage
Human Rights DayEnglish
Día de los Derechos HumanosSpanish
יום זכויות האדםHebrew
يوم حقوق الإنسانArabic
세계 인권 선언일Korean
Internationaler Tag der MenschenrechteGerman

Human Rights Day 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Human Rights Day 2015

Thursday, December 10, 2015
List of dates for other years

The United Nations' (UN) Human Rights Day is annually observed December 10 to mark the anniversary of the presentation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Many schools and libraries have books that educate people about human rights.

©iStockphoto.com/ RichVintage

What do people do?

Events focused on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are held worldwide on and around December 10. Many events aim to educate people, especially children and teenagers, on their human rights and the importance of upholding these in their own communities and further afield.

The day may also include protests to alert people of circumstances in parts of the world where the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is not recognized or respected, or where the importance of these rights are not considered to be important. Cultural events are also organized to celebrate the importance of human rights through music, dance, drama or fine art.

Public life

Human Rights Day is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was drafted between January 1947 and December 1948. It aimed to form a basis for human rights all over the world and represented a significant change of direction from events during World War II and the continuing colonialism that was rife in the world at the time. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is considered as the most translated document in modern history. It is available in more than 360 languages and new translations are still being added.

The UN General Assembly adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris, France, on the December 10, 1948. All states and interested organizations were invited to mark December 10 as Human Rights Day at a UN meeting on December 4, 1950. It was first observed on December 10 that year and has been observed each year on the same date. Each year Human Rights Day has a theme. Some of these themes have focused on people knowing their human rights or the importance of human rights education.

Symbols

The UN symbol (an azimuthal equidistant projection of the globe centered on the North Pole surrounded by olive branches) is often associated with Human Rights Day. Copies of the whole Universal Declaration of Human Rights are also regarded as symbolic of Human Rights Day and are often distributed on or around December 10.

Human Rights Day Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday typeWhere it is observed
MonDec 101990Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
TueDec 101991Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuDec 101992Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
FriDec 101993Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SatDec 101994Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SunDec 101995Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
TueDec 101996Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
WedDec 101997Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuDec 101998Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
FriDec 101999Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SunDec 102000Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
MonDec 102001Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
TueDec 102002Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
WedDec 102003Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
FriDec 102004Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SatDec 102005Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SunDec 102006Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
MonDec 102007Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
WedDec 102008Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuDec 102009Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
FriDec 102010Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SatDec 102011Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
MonDec 102012Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
TueDec 102013Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
WedDec 102014Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuDec 102015Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SatDec 102016Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
SunDec 102017Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
MonDec 102018Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
TueDec 102019Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
ThuDec 102020Human Rights DayUnited Nations observance 
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