A Human Rights City
In Swansea our aim is to become a Human Rights City and recognise that this means embracing a vision of vibrant, diverse, fair and safe communities built on the foundations of universal human rights.
They can never be taken away, although they can sometimes be restricted - for example if a person breaks the law, or in the interests of national security.
These basic rights are based on shared values like dignity, fairness, equality, respect and independence. These values are defined and protected by law. In Britain our human rights are protected by the Human Rights Act 1998.
What's a Human Rights City?
A Human Rights City is a city where the local authority and statutory agencies like the police, civil society organisations and the private sector all make a declaration and commit to putting their residents' human rights and fundamental freedoms at the heart of everything they do. A Human Rights City puts the individual in the centre.
The ultimate vision is to incorporate human rights into policy, practice and local life, raising awareness of the good stories as well as highlighting areas that need improving.
A key aspect of being a Human Rights City is to engage and listen to its residents' real concerns. By doing this and using a Human Rights approach, the local authority can understand the residents' priorities and address these issues on a local level.
We want to create a city where everyone is equal. To empower people to understand their rights and respect the rights of others. To participate in the decisions that affect them. We want to ensure all people, especially those marginalised and socially vulnerable, are fully able to take part in the decision making, policy development and implementation processes that affect them.
This will create a fairer, vibrant, diverse and safer city for all.
What's next to realise this ambition?
There is a lot of great stuff already happening in Swansea. We are a City of Sanctuary, proud to be a Home Office dispersal city for refugees and asylum seekers. We are a Dementia Friendly city. We are a World Health Organisation Healthy City. We are a UNESCO City of Learning. Swansea Council has also embedded the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into the way we set our policies.
On 10 December, Human Rights Day, Swansea's Public Service Board along with other key stakeholders of the region will be launching our intention to become a Human Rights City along with a 12 month action plan on how we will get there.
Make your pledge
You can copy one of our pledges or make your own pledge:
(Insert name of org) supports Swansea in becoming Wales' first Human Rights City. We understand this is the start of the journey. We embrace the vision of fair, vibrant and safe communities, built upon the foundations of universal human rights, where all can live with equality and dignity. We will respect and promote human rights in our policies and practices.
I support Swansea in becoming Wales' first Human Rights City. I believe in the vision of fair, vibrant and safe communities, where everyone can live with equality and dignity. I will respect and promote the human rights of others.
You can contact us on Adele.Dunstan@swansea.gov.uk
Find out more about Human Rights
If you want to find out more about human rights, there's more on the Equality and Human Rights Commission in Wales website and the British Institute of Human Rights - they also have easy-read guides on human rights.