Sowetan survey reveals low understanding of human rights among South Africans

According to an article published by the Sowetan newspaper on Tuesday, South African don't know their constitutional rights.

The paper conducted a survey asking South Africans if they know their constitutional rights. Many responded saying no. Many aren't aware of the contents of the Constitution, reveals the Sowetan.

Human Rights Head of Advocacy and Communications, Gail Smith says even though there is a low understanding of the Constitution, there is a broad understanding of human rights in the country in general.

Rights assertion is entirely reliant on rights knowledge and unfortunately, when it comes to rights and the law we know that people don't really understand rights and the law until they need it.You don't understand labour rights until you have a problem at work.

Gail Smith, Human Rights Head of Advocacy and Communications

Smith says there are a high number of people reporting human rights abuse related to race and this is because people don't realise that there are other violations they could report. Race seems to be the easiest one, because of the racial history of South Africa, says Smith.

What fewer people understand is that you also have the right to equality based on language, pregnancy, ethnic origin, age, religion, etc... But because people dont know those rights they are likely not to tick the box.

Gail Smith, Human Rights Head of Advocacy and Communications

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This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Sowetan survey reveals low understanding of human rights among South Africans


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