The UCC has released its 2016 report –our third annual– entitled Standing Up For Utah’s Needs. The report assesses policy progress (or lack thereof) toward realization of the human rights stated in our Declaration of Utah Human Rights (see below). The Declaration serves as the framework for our policy positions:
- Update on federal positions, and the important role of Utah immigrants in Utah’s economy (Article I: Immigration)
- Air quality and water availability (Article II: Environmental Health)
- Public school finance, preschool education, and teacher shortages (Article III: Public Education)
- Health care cost & quality measures, social and environmental factors in health, and continuing need to address the needs of uninsured Utahns (Article IV: Health)
- Hate crime legislation, domestic violence, and rape (Article V: Personal Security)
- Homelessness and its impact on the brain development of very young children (Article VI: Social Support Systems)
- Redistricting, open primaries, and campaign finance reform (Article VII: Participatory Governance)
We invite continuing dialogue on the subjects we discuss. We hope that our 2016 report will contribute to ongoing discussion and help to generate public understanding of the many common interests that bind us together as Utahns.
A Declaration of Utah Human Rights
In recognition that the inherent right of every member of the human family to dignity and respect serves as the foundation of freedom, justice, and tranquility in the state of Utah, as well as the United States of America and the world; and in recognition that this right also frames the shared responsibilities of individuals, organizations, and governments; and inspired by the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Utah Citizens’ Counsel (UCC) articulates the following statement of rights as the frame work for UCC policy positions.
Article 1: All Utahns, regardless of race, color, ethnicity, religion, gender and gender identity, language, disability, political preference, age, birth status, military status, or other status, are entitled equally to dignity and respect as human beings and to equitable treatment under the law.
Article 2: All Utahns, young and old, have the right to live and thrive in a healthy environment that includes clean air, land, and water, and share in the responsibility to pass that healthy environment on to succeeding generations.
Article 3: All Utahns have the right to a public education that ensures literacy, numeracy, critical thinking, character development, and the capability for responsible citizenship to help secure a promising future for Utah and the United States in a complex, interdependent, and competitive world.
Article 4: All Utahns have the right to comprehensive, quality health care at reasonable cost, and responsible societal efforts to help them achieve and maintain optimal well-being, with appropriate initiatives that encourage and facilitate healthy living and the prevention of disease, disability, and injury.
Article 5: All Utahns have the right to security of person, especially freedom from physical harm and psychological abuse, whether experienced within the family or in the community at large.
Article 6: All Utahns have the right to the fundamental social support systems that assist in assuring a standard of living adequate for the well-being of both the individual and families, in all their configurations, including timely assistance in case of unemployment, disability, old age, and natural or man-made disasters.
Article 7: All Utahns have the right to transparent and ethical governance as well as effective participation in the democratic process.