Human Rights Day 2022: Our privilege and responsibility

Anna Triponel
December 16, 2022
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It’s been such a pleasure working with so many of you this year. We hope you all have a lovely relaxing and restful holiday break, and come back in 2023 rejuvenated, refreshed and ready for the year ahead. On that front, here is an excerpt from my recent Human Rights Day 2022 piece: 

“All of this is connected — like so much is in life. The shrinking of democratic freedoms and spaces for voice encroaches on the ability of people on the frontlines to safely tell us about impacts on people and planet, which in turn hinders our ability to tackle the climate, nature and human rights crises. To put a spin on Martin Niemöller’s words, first they came for the environmental and human rights defenders, and then we don’t know what happened next.

But judging from the hundreds of reports I have read this year, we do know that it is not a pretty picture. The human rights situation for billions around the world will get steadily and progressively worse and worse. It’s a very unsettling feeling, to look into the future and to know that the lived experience will become harder for so many, with those the least responsible for the root cause of the crises the hardest hit.

Yet, we are ageneration with a significant privilege: it is in our hands — and in our hands only — to touch upon the rights of billions of people, now and into the future. Science shows us that the changes we make over the next few years will impact us for centuries to come. We only have a few years left, but we can do it. With privilege comes responsibility: a responsibility to do whatever we can to transform the systems that are at the heart of the crises we are in. The urgency could not be more urgent.

Just like Vinice, we are all born with human rights. We owe it to ourselves, to our fellow communities, and to future generations to advocate for our rights and those of others. So this human rights day, ask yourself: what action can you take today to be part of the solution for tomorrow?”