World Press Freedom Day Brings Light To Increasing Number of Journalist Being Imprisoned

Anonyme, Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 11:19

Antonella Antonecchia

Violations of human rights of reporters worldwide is on the increase.

To help bring about awareness of the problem on World Press Day, May 3, members of Youth for Human Rights Florida visited Tampa Bay media to get their signature on a petition to get the Universal Declaration of Human Rights taught in Florida schools. Their objective is to bring about better understanding of the concept and importance of Freedom of the Press.

Although most countries claim to guarantee freedom of speech, in contradiction to that, 16 journalists have been outright murdered worldwide so far in 2011. In addition, and not so well publicized, is that 150 journalists have been imprisoned to date in 2011, a number that has already surpassed the total for 2010. For the simple use of a computer to impart information on events on the World Wide Web, 123 people were imprisoned as of May 2011, again surpassing the total for the whole year of 2010.

Press freedom across the world is guaranteed by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Right #19, which states, "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers." Virtually every nation has agreed to abide by the Declaration, but in practice, not all do.

Although Freedom of the Press is considered to be a cornerstone of human rights, especially in America, where it is also part of the Untied States Constitution, Americans are still affected by these rights being violated in other countries. Many Cuban-Americans have relatives and friends who are jailed as independent Cuban journalists deal with censorship and repression of expression daily. Just across the border, Mexico is in the middle of civil drug war and the press have become a popular target, injuring and killing not just members of the press but also innocent bystanders.

Youth for Human Rights Florida, a Chapter of Youth for Human Rights International, educates teachers, students and community groups about our 30 human rights with an award-winning educational program. The program consists of a youth-designed DVD of the 30 rights as stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, “The Story of Human Rights” a powerful DVD that defines human rights of the past and today, and the evoking music video “UNITED” conveying the message anti-bullying and human rights. The Human Rights Department of The Church of Scientology is a proud supporter of Youth for Human Rights International. To see these videos for free, or to receive a free educators guide go to:

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