Congressman Lowenthal Introduces Bipartisan Legislation Honoring 70th Anniversary of Human Rights Day and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

December 10, 2018
Press Release

Congressman Alan Lowenthal (CA-47) today joined with 42 of his House colleagues to introduce a bipartisan House Resolution honoring the 70th Anniversary of Human Rights Day and the 1948 ratification by the United Nations of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

"Seventy years ago, the United States proudly signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)," Congressman Lowenthal said. "Today, the promotion of respect for human rights as embodied in the declaration continues to be a key component of our country's foreign policy. The rights enshrined in the UDHR uphold the basic principles of life, freedom, and humanity that our nation was founded on, and which are enshrined in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Congress, and the world, must recognize that those who are denied basic human rights, such as the freedoms of speech, religion, and political expression, are also denied basic human respect and dignity. We must continue to advocate and fight for the universal protection of human rights."

Championed by First Lady and U.N Ambassador Eleanor Roosevelt, and adopted by the United Nations in 1948, the UDHR represents the first comprehensive international agreement about the specific rights and freedoms of all human beings. Today, the UDHR is the world's most translated document, with over 416 different translations.

Since 1948, the UDHR has been the foundational document for enumerable international treaties, regional human rights instruments, national constitutions, and is a key component of the International Bill of Human Rights which went into effect in 1976.
 
Congressman Lowenthal's legislation currently has the support of 42 House Members.

A bipartisan companion resolution was also introduced in the Senate today by Senator Chris Coons of Delaware and Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina.

"Today, we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the ratification of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and honor those around the world who work tirelessly to advance fundamental rights like justice and equality," Senator Chris Coons (DE) said. "On this important anniversary, we remember all those around the world who suffer from violence and persecution, and recommit ourselves to advocating for their freedom."

To read the full text of the House resolution, please click here.