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World Human Rights Day! #WHRD15

December 10th is observed across the world as Human Rights Day. It honours the United Nations General Assembly’s adoption and proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (EDHR) back when it was first introduced on the 10th December 1948.

This year’s Human Rights Day is devoted to the launch of a year-long campaign for the 50th anniversary of the two International Covenants on Human Rights: the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which were adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 16 December 1966.

The two Covenants, together with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, form the International Bill of Human Rights, setting out the civil, political, cultural, economic, and social rights that are the birth right of all human beings.

“Our Rights. Our Freedoms. Always.” aims to promote and raise awareness of the two Covenants on their 50th anniversary. The year-long campaign revolves around the theme of rights and freedoms — freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear — which underpin the International Bill of Human Rights are as relevant today as they were when the Covenants were adopted 50 years ago

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Here at Pain Concern one of our firm beliefs as a charity is that Health and Wellbeing is one our fundamental human rights. Sadly this not the case globally but we do our best here with our staff and volunteers to help everyone dealing with chronic pain empower themselves and their family members; be it with the tools to help or creating a better understanding within the community itself.

Over the last five years we’ve produced multiple podcasts which cover the vast world of Human Rights. Here are our top 8 rated shows in the area!


AP71: Protect our Girls

Over 100,000 women in the UK have been affected by female genital mutilation (FGM) with devastating long-term consequences including persistent pain. Janet Graves hears from FGM survivors and the healthcare professionals treating them about this culturally-embedded practice and how to uproot it.

Listen here

AP69: People Not Patients

Acceptance can be difficult when people in pain are under pressure from those around them to be ‘the person they were before the pain’. GP Frances Cole’s rehabilitation service puts the people – not ‘patients’ – she sees in control of guiding their own treatment with the aim of being the best they can be with the pain. She asks them to focus on what matters most to them and helps them connect to ‘a new world’ where they can learn skills and knowledge from other people who’ve faced the same challenges.

Listen here

AP66: Not a Burden

There are 178,000 young carers in England and Wales doing unpaid work for parents too ill to perform essential household tasks or even look after themselves. Kerris Olsen-Jones, who works to support these children and young people – some as young as five years old – says that they sometimes ‘miss the opportunity to be children’. She and her colleagues help the young people to socialise and make the most of the opportunities available to them.

Listen here

AP55: More Power to You

‘How are you?’ Three little words often dreaded by people in pain. Gareth Parsons explains to Paul Evans why these simple social rituals can be so difficult for people in pain and how social interactions can instead be made empowering. Parsons’ work on participatory action research gets people in pain together to recognise the negative attitudes or oppression experienced in daily life and find ways to help themselves. The real experts on pain are not the clinicians of researchers, but the people who live with it every day, he argues.

Listen here

AP48: Nursing Beyond Drugs

‘Imagine how it feels if you’re in pain and people won’t help you.’ Like other healthcare professionals, nurses can sometimes struggle to understand the perspective of people living with pain. At a training day for student nurses devoted to chronic pain, Gareth Parsons impresses on his audience the importance of believing the patient and delivers some uncomfortable truths based on his research about the frustrations people with pain often have of healthcare professionals: ‘you are the problem!’

Listen here

AP20: The Social Cost of Pain

]Pain has a huge impact not just on individuals but also on society, healthcare systems and the economy. Airing Pain takes a look at how the International Association for the Study of Pain’s Declaration of Montréal and EFIC (the European Federation of International Association for the Study of Pain Chapters) are working to drive pain up the political agenda. We interview experts in healthcare policy and chronic pain treatment as well as patient groups at EFIC’s European Societal Impact of Pain symposium for their views on how the way society and the medical profession respond to pain could be improved.

Listen here

AP18: Growing Older with Pain

The importance of family and carers taking an active role in the management of elderly patient’s pain is highlighted, along with the importance of raising awareness of the best treatments for pain in older people among health professionals. We also hear the inspirational story of Michael and Rosemary Morrison who together have rebuilt their lives around their chronic back pain and the benefits of using computers and computer games to access information and exercise.

Listen here

AP3: Children and Pain

Chronic pain is as widespread in children and young people as in the population as a whole, but is probably even less well understood. Jan Barton and her son Sam, who grew up in constant pain, discuss their struggle to get a proper diagnosis and to find effective treatment, while, Dr Christina Liossi explains how hypnosis can be particularly valuable as an approach to managing pain for children. Dr Amanda Williams describes the psychologist’s role in helping patients manage their pain and Dr Tonya Palermo explains how a psychologist can explain pain to young people.

Listen here


What role do human rights play in your life?

Let us know in the comments!

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