On Human Rights day, it is time to reflect, stand up, speak out and act

published 10 December 2018 updated 11 December 2018

Education is a human right and those who defend it should be protected and supported, says David Edwards, Education International General Secretary.

In a blog statement on Worlds of Education, Edwards looks back at 70 years of work on human rights since the adoption of the Universal Declaration on December 10th, 1948. He sees this as an occasion to be inspired by its principles and its origin, and an opportunity for trade unionists and educators to reflect on its values and the aspirations it represents. In his statement he calls on educators to stand up, speak out and act. “It is vital to show solidarity to those brave teachers who are taking on dictatorships daily. However, we must also counter those forces that are chipping away at the very foundations of established democracies; their traditions, culture, and institutions,” he underlines.

Reflecting on the present assaults on democracy, Edwards reminds us that “the fight for democracy is a war of ideas and we, as educators and trade unionists are on the front lines of that war. The time for complacency, if there ever was one, is over”. Together with its affiliates, Education International will develop a comprehensive policy strategy on education and democracy for the coming years.