Attorney at Law Mary Francis has said that human rights are under siege in Saint Lucia.
Francis, who is the Coordinator of the National Centre for Legal Aid and Human Rights, made the observation ahead of the observance of Human Rights Day on Monday, December 10, 2018.
The day will mark the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights promulgated by the United Nations General Assembly on 10th December 1948.
Francis noted however that universal human rights are being eroded by governments worldwide.
In the case of Saint Lucia, she observed that contributory factors to the erosion of human rights include the broken justice system, lack of adequate health and lack of adequate housing, all of which have been neglected over many years.
“We must all stand up for our rights to social and economic justice, to our right to liberty and security, in the face of those great challenges which are due to the economic model of development inherited by Saint Lucia,” the outspoken human rights advocate asserted in a statement to St Lucia Times.
Francis expressed the opinion that the time has come for changing this model if all persons must enjoy Human Rights to the fullest,.
She explained that Human Rights are indivisible, inalienable, and must be promoted and respected, without which individuals cannot live as human beings.
The Coordinator of the National Cenre for Legal Aid and Human Rights contended that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is even more relevant today against the challenges of poverty, crime, oppression.
” It has stood the test of time,” Francis noted.
She urged citizens on Human Rights Day to commit themselves to stand up for Human Rights.
“Join a Human Rights N.G.O! Become involved, because Human Rights is the foundation of peace and democracy. Government must take the lead. Further a call is made to the Government, on this 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to establish a National Commission for Human Rights, for Saint Lucia,” Francis told St Lucia Times.