Today is Human Rights Day, and this year’s celebration marks 50 years since the United Nations General Assembly adopted the International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).
These two covenants, together with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, became the International Bill of Human Rights, which has served to guide many countries in establishing the systems and institutions that allow people to live with freedom and dignity.
When we think of basic human rights, freedom is perhaps one of the first things to come to mind. But what exactly does freedom look like? The International Bill of Human Rights explores four particular aspects of freedom: freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from want and freedom from fear.
Here in Alberta, we support equality for everyone in our province, and recognize that our work as legislators is not done until all of us enjoy the same protections and freedoms. During this session of the Legislative Assembly, we were proud to take another step towards strengthening protections for Albertans and furthering freedom; Bill 7 will amend the Alberta Human Rights Act by adding gender identity and gender expression as expressly prohibited grounds of discrimination.
We pledge to continue to listen to Alberta’s most vulnerable groups as we carry on our fight against discrimination in our province.