Human rights are rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled. In response to widespread, horrific violations of human rights in the first half of the 20th century, the international community established international human rights laws that lay down the obligations of governments to respect, protect and fulfill human rights. APA's vision statement includes serving as an effective champion of the application of psychology to promote human rights.
What are human rights?
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has the mandate from the international community to promote and protect all human rights.
The United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights' keynote address at the International Congress of Psychology 2012: Exploring the nexus of psychology and human rights and how they serve humanity.
Human Rights: A Basic Overview
The AAAS Science and Human Rights Coalition is a network of scientific membership organizations that recognizes a role for science and scientists in efforts to realize human rights. Launched in January 2009, the aim of the Coalition is to facilitate communication and partnerships on human rights within and across the scientific community, and between the scientific and human rights communities.
Issues, Opportunities and Advocacy Resources
- The Human Right to Enjoy the Benefits of Scientific Progress and Its Applications
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes the right of everyone to "share in scientific advancement and its benefits" (Article 27(2)). This right became the basis for Article 15 (1)(b) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966).
- How do psychologists work with human rights abuse victims?
International organizations and other training opportunities prepare psychologists for work with victims of trauma and torture.
- Answers to Your Questions About Psychology and Human Rights
Learn about important human rights issues and how APA and psychologists are working to help.
What You Can Do
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Ugandans petition court over controversial anti-homosexuality law
March 11, 2014, Reuters
Monitor on Psychology Articles
Deciding who belongs
September 1, 2010
With terrorism, labeling has implications
November 1, 2009
Members say no to psychologist involvement in interrogations in unlawful detention settings
November 1, 2008
July 1, 2006
APA Offices and Programs
Public Interest Directorate
Applies psychology to the fundamental problems of human welfare and the promotion of equitable and just treatment of all segments of society through education, training and public policy.
Office of International Affairs
The Office of International Affairs serves as APA’s touch point for international information and initiatives within APA. It leads outreach with APA’s international members and affiliates, and coordinates APA’s participation in international venues.