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Human Rights Day: December 10 : EFPA psychologists warn about violations

8 Dec 2017

Worldwide, psychologists warn about the fact that human rights violations can currently be observed in so many places in the world.

News - Human Rights Day: December 10 : EFPA psychologists warn about violations

70 years Universal Declaration of Human Rights: EFPA psychologists stand up for human rights

In 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Today, EFPA calls upon all States and interested organizations to celebrate the 10th of December as Human Rights Day. 

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a fundamental document for the promotion of wellbeing of mankind. Human rights are inalienable and their observance is a precondition for individual health and development as well as for societies worthy of human beings. 

Violations of Human Rights 

In sharp contrast to this widely acknowledged conviction are the documentations of human rights violations. 

Worldwide, psychologists warn about the fact that human rights violations can currently be observed in so many places in the world. 

Human rights violations often result in heavy bodily damages and psychological impairments. On the individual level, human rights violations lead to individual suffering, depression, trauma and suicide. Human rights violations are also often a significant preceding condition for political and religious extremism and radicalization ending up in war, repression and terrorism. Thus, human rights violations do not only cause severe injuries for the victims but also affect societies on the whole, and on very long-term periods – over several generations.

Psychological support can help to reduce the massive negative consequences that foregoing human rights violations have for victims and for societies. However, contributing to the decrease of posttraumatic effects on victims, they know that many consequences of human rights violations are enduring. 

Psychologists help reduce consequences of human rights violations

Psychologists can help to overcome or at least reduce the most severe consequences of human rights violations. They have expertise of handling depression and trauma and they apply this professional knowledge when they work, for example, in refugee camps. They know about the conditions to be fulfilled so that victims may feel integrated into society of humans again. And, psychologists can help to overcome the severe consequences of the refusal of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as well as of Civil and Political Rights when they deliver their expertise in Governmental and Non-Governmental institutions responsible for the integration into the education and employment system. 

Therefore, EFPA, representing more than 300 000 psychologists from 37 European countries, makes a strong appeal, especially on those who are politically responsible, to avail Human Rights Day as an opportunity to raise awareness on human rights and their immense value for our common world society.

Do you wish to reach out with us to raise awareness on human rights and psychology?

Get in touch with the EFPA Board Human Rights and Psychology and share your ideas or share this message in your network.

Contact: 

EFPA Board Human Rights and Psychology:

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Wagner, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany, wagner1(at)uni-marburg.de, phone +49 6421 282 3664

Karin Teepe, Maison des Femmes, Hôpital Delafontaine, Associacion Parcours d'Exil, Centre d'information sur les droits des femmes et des familles PARIS

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/europeanpsychology/

70 Years Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

http://www.un.org/en/events/humanrightsday/

The Human Rights Day is also devoted to the two International Covenants on Human Rights: the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which were adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 16 December 1966.

Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt of the United States, chair of the drafting committee, holding a Universal Declaration of Human Rights poster in English. UN Photo (1949)

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