Youth for Human Rights Petitions the Ontario Legislative Assembly To Require Human Rights Education Throughout the Province

Raising the bar on human rights through education on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

“Despite Canada’s public image as a human rights promoter,” realized Nicole Crellin “there were human rights violations hidden under the social veneer.”  That’s why she took on being the director of United for Human Rights Canada. Crellin, who is featured in an episode of Voices for Humanity that premieres on the Scientology Network Wednesday, June 5, says, “As a teacher, I saw that human rights education was the only weapon that one could use to really raise awareness. Only in that way can we have a society where there’s peace and tolerance that exists for everyone.”

Youth for Human Rights volungteers bring the petitions they collected to present to the Ontario Legislative Assembly
Youth for Human Rights volunteers bring the petitions they collected to present to the Ontario Legislative Assembly.

Crellin led a delegation in May to present a petition to the Ontario Legislative Assembly. The volunteers, members of Youth for Human Rights, the United for Human Rights program for young people, had collected thousands of signatures on a petition calling for mandatory human rights education throughout the province. 

Crellin (kneeling left front) and her Youth for Human Rights volunteers
Crellin (kneeling left front) and Youth for Human Rights volunteers make human rights education available at every opportunity. They are shown here at their booth at the 17th annual York Regional Police International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, held in Markham, Ontario, in April 2024.

The Association for Canadian Studies released a survey in December 2023, coinciding with the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The survey found only 32 percent of respondents ages 18 to 34 agreed with the statement: “Everyone is born with an equal opportunity to succeed in Canada.” 

According to Human Rights Watch, among the most pressing violations of human rights in Canada are:

  • Systemic discrimination against Indigenous peoples
  • Violence against Indigenous women
  • Mistreatment and detention of those seeking refugee protection in Canada
  • Failure to exercise meaningful oversight of Canadian extractive companies operating abroad

To this, another online resource serving professions in the human rights sector adds:

  • Religious freedom and tolerance, citing the Supreme Court of Canada’s refusal to review Quebec’s controversial Bill 21 that bans civil servants, teachers and police officers in Quebec from wearing religious symbols when providing or receiving government services. 

For more than a decade, Crellin has spearheaded the campaign to educate millions across the nation using educational materials produced by United for Human Rights. United for Human Rights is a nonprofit, international education program sponsored by the Church of Scientology and Scientologists worldwide. Its aim is to create a sea change by teaching young people everywhere their inalienable rights, thus creating a generation of leaders who will demand full implementation of the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 

United for Human Rights is inspired by humanitarian and Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard who believed that “human rights must be made a fact, not an idealistic dream.” 

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