PAVING THE WAY FOR RESPECT OF
HUMAN RIGHTS IN MEXICO
Mexico's Youth for Human Rights chapter was formed when YHRI's World Educational Tour visited the country in 2004 to meet with officials of the United Nations, government agencies, educational institutions and orphanages.
To address severe human rights violations during an all-out drug war between security forces and drug cartels, YHR Mexico has continually widened its scope. It has participated in rock concerts to increase awareness, aired public service messages on state television and produced a special edition of the What are Human Rights? booklet featuring Mexican celebrities promoting the human rights message.
In Ecatepec, an area with one of Mexico’s highest crime rates, YHR’s volunteer instructors conducted seminars for 50 school principals who, in turn, implemented the curriculum in their districts.
The National Commission of Human Rights partners with Youth for Human Rights and has used YHRI materials in more than 300 seminars attended by 15,000 teenagers.
The Mexican Ministry of Environment likewise adopted the Youth for Human Rights campaign materials to supplement their own education programme.
YHR Mexico’s advocacy majorly contributed to the incorporation of the full text of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into the Chiapas State Constitution, making human rights education mandatory in that state.
YHR Mexico also provided briefings and materials to members of the Chiapas legislature and trained 1,000 students and educators for the Agency of Family Development, headed by the wife of the governor.
With grass-roots awareness helping to give the issue greater prominence, the National Congress passed a constitutional amendment, ratified by the states and signed by the President of Mexico on June 9, 2011, officially incorporating the Universal Declaration of Human Rights into the Mexican Constitution.
This unprecedented event signals a renaissance of human rights for the Mexican people.
“I want to express my gratitude for The Story of Human Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights material which has been of great use in my daily work, giving lectures about human rights to groups ranging from migrants to the federal police.” —Executive, National Migration Institute of Mexico