Your rights

Human Rights

Human rights as we know them today began with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. New Zealand, led by Prime Minister Peter Fraser, played a key part in the drafting of the Declaration. In this section you can find out what we mean by human rights, how they work and how you can use them. You can also learn more about the national and international laws that protect and promote our human rights.

What are human rights?

What are human rights?

Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms that everyone should have. There are two main types of human rights – civil and political rights, and social, cultural and economic rights.

Learn More
What is our role?

What is our role?

The Human Rights Commission is New Zealand’s national human rights institution. We have ‘A’ status accreditation, which gives us voting rights at the International Coordinating Committee.

Learn More
Human Rights Legislation in New Zealand

Human Rights Legislation in New Zealand

There are two main laws in New Zealand that specifically promote and protect human rights. These are the Human Rights Act 1993, and the Bill of Rights Act 1990.

Learn More
Disability rights

Disability rights

You have the right to be treated fairly and equally. Find out about human rights as they relate to people with disabilities, including the rights of children.

Learn More
Indigenous rights

Indigenous rights

Learn about indigenous human rights and the Treaty of Waitangi.

Learn More
Racial discrimination

Racial discrimination

What your rights are, how you can expect to be treated, and what laws protect you when it comes to racial discrimination.

Learn More
Rights of Newcomers

Rights of Newcomers

What your rights are, how you can expect to be treated, and what laws protect you.

Learn More
Rights of religious communities

Rights of religious communities

What your rights are, how you can expect to be treated, and what laws protect you.

Learn More