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Human Rights

Human rights are considered moral rights and they contain at least four key qualities: they are natural rights, they are equal rights, they are inalienable rights and they are universal rights. Although these qualities are distinct, they also overlap."

  • Equal means that everyone is entitled to be treated the same with respect to these rights, regardless of race, ethnicity, sex, gender, class, religion or any other characteristic.
  • Inalienable means that they cannot be denied or taken away.
  • Universal means that they are common rights for everyone, regardless of nationality, culture or location.
  • Natural means that their validity or existence is not contingent upon legal rules or cultural norms of a nation, but rather they are derived from and based on moral reasoning and ethical principles. In other words, these rights are inherent to being human."

Source: Patrick Blessiger, Chief research scientist for the International Higher Education Teaching and Learning Association. Excerpt from an article on "Inclusive Leadership in Higher Education", in universityworldnews.com, and based on the book with the same name, by Patrick Blessinger and Lorraine Stefani, 2016.