Human rights are the only set of internationally agreed standards that set out how people should be treated, and what they should expect from wider society and from organisations and institutions. They can help to navigate complex issues with competing viewpoints, in ways that treat all people fairly and impartially.
If people are to exercise their rights and responsibilities, they need to know about them, care about them, understand how they relate to their lives and work, and to have effective, transparent institutions that fulfil their responsibilities and obligations.
This 96-page Guide sets out what human rights are, the main human rights Conventions and Declarations that relate to museums, and particular rights especially relevant to museums. The Guide goes through a human rights-based approach applied to museums, which is a planning method to help more people attain their basic rights through museums, and for museums to provide more effective, transparent and transformative public service.
It is especially important that museums, and those who fund them, reflect on how they are supporting people’s rights, in a climate of competition for funding. Everyone is entitled to the same rights, equally.