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International #HumanRightsDay 2019

At BCEdAccess, we believe that self-advocacy is the lens through which parents and guardians – and educators and policy makers – can learn the most about what students with disabilities need in education, in BC and beyond.

This year, the United Nations theme for #HumanRightsDay (December 10th) is Youth Standing Up For Human Rights.

From the UN website (https://www.un.org/en/observances/human-rights-day):

“Why Youth?

  • Youth participation is essential to achieve sustainable development for all.
    Participation in public life is a fundamental principle of human rights. Young people are seeking to participate in all decisions that have a direct and indirect impact upon their wellbeing. They need to be heard to inform more effective decision-making and achieve sustainable development for all.
  • Youth can play a crucial role in positive change.
    Young people have always been major drivers of political, economic and social transformation. They are at the forefront of grassroots mobilizations for positive change and bring fresh ideas and solutions for a better world.
  • Empowering youth to better know and claim their rights will generate benefits globally.
    Young people are often marginalized and encounter difficulties in accessing and enjoying their rights because of their age. Upholding their rights and empowering them to better know and claim them will generate benefits globally.”

From involving our children in their Individual Education Plan meetings to the youth self-advocate panel at our annual AdvoCon event and in our work with BC People First, we believe in elevating youth voices in their drive to access their human right to education.

Please watch this video created by BC self-advocate Damon Kirsebom. (follow him on Instagram @ damonkirsebom  )

It articulates very well the history, and the international, national and local context of education for students with disabilities. It talks about current issues of exclusion and discrimination. It outlines his own experiences.  And he asks,

“Will you walk with me?” Stand up for human rights, today and every day.

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