Human rights emphasized at Youth Day

The Toronto chapter of the Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI), along with several community leaders and organizations, took part in the fifth annual Youth Day celebrations last Sunday at Yonge-Dundas Square.

Youth Day’s mandate is to empower and engage youth in the arts as a healthy and learning alternative and inspire them to increase their involvement as active members of the community.

This year’s events drew thousands of participants. At one of the booths, YHRI volunteers informed the audience about their rights, specifically the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The volunteers encouraged the audience to sign a petition to implement the Declaration, now endorsed by 192 nations around the world, including Canada. The petition will be presented to the federal government to urge them to broadly display and promote it.

Nicole Crellin, YHRI Toronto Chapter coordinator, spoke at the celebration and invited the audience to learn about their 30 basic human rights under the UDHR. She encouraged them to become aware of the existence of the unique YHRI educational tools they can use to bring human rights to life.

This year, in honour of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014), YHRI urges leaders in countries around the world to recognize that children who do not know their rights are vulnerable.

They urge that the UDHR be promoted, disseminated, displayed, read and explained principally in schools and other educational institutions, without distinction based on the political status of countries or territories and in accordance with the General Assembly when this document was adopted and proclaimed on December 10, 1948.

To learn more about what the YHRI is doing around the world, visit

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