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Know your rights!

by Emma – 13th Dec 2017

Last month I went on some training covering human rights and mental health to support me in a new campaign project called MORR (Making Our Rights Reality). MORR is being run by Youth Access and delivered in partnership with other youth advice and counselling services across the UK.

This was the first time I have been taught about my human rights despite eleven years in the education system.

I found myself questioning why didn’t I learn this at school, why is it not part of the curriculum? Your rights can be applied to a range of situations that you may face in life. I’ve certainty come across quite a few issues in which my rights have not been adhered to, e.g. when work found out about my mental health I was told that they wouldn’t have offered me the job if they knew about my mental health. I was also lectured about why I did not disclose it at interview. I had my duties and responsibilities restricted without any explanation. I did not know all of my rights and how to act on them. I found myself researching on the internet, visiting the Citizens Advice Bureau and contacting ACAS (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service).

Did you know?

Everyone has sixteen human rights as this graphic shows (we’ve also listed them below in case you’re using a screenreader)

Graphic of the human rights act

  1. Right to life (Article 2)
  2. Right not to be tortured or treated in an inhuman or degrading way (Article 3)
  3. Right to be free from slavery or forced labour (Article 4)
  4. Right to liberty (Article 5)
  5. Right to a fair trial (Article 6)
  6. Right not to be punished for something which wasn’t against the law when you did it (Article 7)
  7. Right to respect for private and family life, home and correspondence (Article 8)
  8. Right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion (Article 9)
  9. Right to freedom of expression (Article 10)
  10. Right to freedom of assembly and association (Article 11)
  11. Right to marry and found a family (Article 12)
  12. Right not to be discriminated against in relation to any of the human rights listed here (Article 14)
  13. Right to peaceful enjoyment of possessions (Article 1, Protocol 1)
  14. Right to education (Article 2, Protocol 1)
  15. Right to free elections (Article 3, Protocol 1)
  16. Abolition of the death penalty (Article 1, Protocol 13)

Not everyone is aware of their rights under the Human Rights Act law.

People who are aware are not necessarily going to tell you. This could be an employer or professional. Check out the BIHR website and the different handbooks they provide. Teach yourself about your rights. Check out this two minute video from the British Institute of Human Rights.



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