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Definition of Human Rights

those rights which are inherent in nature and without which

we cannot live as human beings. United Nation

the supreme, inherent and inalienable rights to life, dignity

and to self development. It is the essence of these rights that
makes man/ woman human. Phil. Commission on Human

no cause is more worthy than the cause of human rights.

Human rights are more than legal concepts: they are the
essence of man/ woman. They are what make man/ woman
human. That is why they are called human rights: deny them
and you deny mans/ womans humanity. Sen. Jose W. Diokno

Sources of Human Rights

1. International Bill of Human Rights which consists of;

1.1 Universal Declaration of Human Rights 10 December 1948

to provide a common understanding of human rights and fundamental freedoms

covered by the UN charter and to serve as a common standard of achievement for all
peoples and all nations (Preamble)

- article 2 prohibits discrimination based on sex, skin, color, religion, political opinion
or nationality.
- 2 categories of rights
a. civil and political (Arts. 3-15 and 18-21)
b. economic, social and cultural rights (Arts. 16, 17, 22-26 and 28)
1.2 International Covenant on civil and Political Rights (ICCPR 1987)
1.3 International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR 1976)
1.3.1 First Optional Protocol of the ICCPR
1.4 Second Optional Protocol of the ICCPR aiming at the Abolition of the Death Penalty
-these define in more details the rights set out in UDHR and also provide additional


2. Subsequent Human Documents

The United Nation adopted more than 20 principal treaties that further
elaborates human rights. Among are:

a. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD)

b. Convention on the elimination of All Forms of discrimination Against Women
c. Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Punishment
d. Convention on the Rights of the Child


3. Relevant Human Rights Provisions, 1987 Constitution

3.1 For the Protection of Civil and Political Rights

Article 2: Declaration of Principles and State Policies
Article 3: Bill of Rights
Article 4: Citizenship
Article 5: Suffrage
Article 6: The Legislative Department (Sec. 32)
-Article 17: Amendments or Revisions (Sec. 2)
3.2 For the Protection of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Article 12: National Economy and Patrimony
Article 13: Social Justice and Human Rights
Article 14: Education, Science and Technology, Arts, Culture and Sports
Article 15: The Family

Basics of Human Rights

Fundamental Characteristics of Human Rights

a. Universal- human rights are held by all persons, equally, universally and
b. Indivisible- refers to the equal importance of each human rights law
- a person cannot be denied of a right because someone decides it as less
important or
non- essential
c. Interrelated/ interdependent
- all human rights are part of a complementary framework
d. Inalienable
- a person could not lose these rights any more than you can cease being a
human being
- a persons rights cannot be taken from a person under any circumstances

Basic Principles of Human Rights

- The Philippines
adopts the
principles of
international law
as part of the law
of the land (Art.
2, Sec,. 1987 Phil.

Classification of Human Rights

1. Source

a. Natural Rights- God-given rights, acknowledged by everybody to be morally good.

They are unwritten but they prevail as norms of society

b. Constitutional Rights- rights granted by the constitution

c. Statutory Rights- enacted by Congress

2. Recipient

a. Collective-rights of society, those that can be enjoyed only in company with others

b. Individual- rights accorded to individuals

3. Aspect of life

a. civil rights- rights that the law will enforce at the instance of individuals for the
pupose of securing to them the enjoyment of happiness.

b. political rights- rights which enable us to participate in running the affairs of the
government either directly or indirectly

of citizens for liberty and equality


Economic and Social Rights- which he law confers upon the people
to enable them to achieve social and economic development, thereby
ensuring them their well-being, happiness and financial security like
the right to property, education, promotion of social justice and etc.
d. Cultural Rights- those that ensure the well-being of the individual
and foster preservation, enrichment and dynamic evolution of
national culture based on the principle of unity and diversity in a
climate of free artistic and intellectual expression.
- concern the production, development and management of
materials for the necessities of life. The right to preserve and
develop ones cultural identity. Rights that give the people social
and economic security.

4. Derogation/ Derogability
a. Non-degorable rights or absolute rights- rights which cannot be
suspended or taken away even on extreme emergency
b. Dergogable Rights rights which can be taken away and may be
limited depending on circumstances

State Obligations of Human Rights

- to respect and promote human rights and fulfil its obligations

that flows from these 2 sources:

1. membership in the UN
2. various human rights groups and humanitarian law agreements to
which it is a state party.

Duties of Individuals under International Human Rights Law

3 Types:

1. Duties of Individuals vested with authority to respect, protect and promote

human rights. Duty of state authorities to act or to act, to give effect to a right

2. Duties of individuals to exercise rights responsibly

General duties of individual towards other and community

1. Exercise rights responsibly;
2. Strive for the promotion and observance of rights;
3. Promote and protect appropriate political, social and economic order for
4. Contribute as, appropriate, to social and international order in which rights and
freedom can be fully realized;
5. Duties of parents in the upbringing and development of the child
- to provide for the child
- To help the child in exercise of his/ her rights



1.Universal Declaration of Human Rights

2. Declaration of the right to Development
3. Convention on the Rights of the Child