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Monday, 14 December 2009 15:59

Florida Youth Walk in the First Ever International Walk for Human Rights Featured

Written by  Chad Andro
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Youth for Human Rights International Marched Across the Memorial Causeway to Celebrate Human Rights Day - Photo by David ZiffIn honor of the United Nations Human Rights Day, on December 10th, hundreds of youths walked across Clearwater’s Memorial Causeway carrying signs and singing songs to forward the message, “Embrace Diversity – End Discrimination” in the first ever International Walk for Human Rights, organized by Youth for Human Rights Florida. This diverse group of youths, from a wide range of cultures, religions, races, and educational levels, crossed the bridge carrying signs representing the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Clearwater walk represented the USA in an international effort involving thousands of youths on six continents, in nations around the world, all walking on the same day. They did not walk in protest or to fight for a particular cause; they walked simply to raise public awareness of the importance of human rights. This year’s message of non-discrimination, originated by the United Nations, is based upon Human Right number one: “We Are All Born Free and Equal”.

Youths walked in honor of Human Rights Day in Austria, Barbados, Cameroon, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Holland, India, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Slovakia, Somalia, the United Kingdom and Zambia, among others.

Dustin McGahee, President of Youth for Human Rights Florida and originator of the walk, described it best when he said, “Being part of an event where youth around the world are uniting against discrimination and promoting human rights brings excitement and hope that there can be change.”

In honor of this occasion, and acknowledging the efforts of these youths to make it possible, both the City of Clearwater and theMembers of Youth for Human Rights at the Clearwater City Council - Photo by David Ziff City of Tampa proclaimed December 10th, 2009, to be Youth for Human Rights Day.

Youth for Human Rights Florida is a chapter of Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI), a non-profit secular organization founded in 2001 by educator Dr. Mary Shuttleworth. “Having spent over 30 years working with youth, I saw that youth were vulnerable when they did not know their rights. It is important that they not only know they have these rights but that, according to Article 29 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, they also have responsibilities to protect their rights and the rights of their peers. That is exactly what these youth organizing and participating in the International Walk for Human Rights are doing,” Dr. Shuttleworth said of the event.

For more information on The International Walk for Human Rights log on to:

Read 1183 times Last modified on Tuesday, 15 December 2009 15:52