Human Rights Centre Annual Report for 2018 published


Human Rights Centre Annual Report for 2018 published


The Human Rights Centre’s (HRC) targets for 2018 were set down in a Plan of Action[1]adopted by the Human Rights Delegation in September 2017. The HRC is of the view that it has achieved these targets satisfactorily.


Promotion of fundamental and human rights

The promotion of fundamental and human rights divides into several areas: training and education, research, information and general promotion.

The HRC’s online lectures have gained wider distribution. The fundamental and human rights projects have made good progress and results have been obtained. This was the result of systematic organisation, additional educational and training resources, and cooperation with different parties and agencies. The HRC continued to work with the University of Helsinki in educational projects in the field of human rights.


As regards research into fundamental and human rights, the HRC commissioned an international comparative study to examine the need to reform the Act on Legal Recognition of the Gender of Transsexuals (the Transgender Act). The HRC was also involved in the work of the National Advisory Board of the Academy of Finland’s Centre of Excellence in Research on Ageing and Care.


The way the Centre distributed information became more systematic and its targeted communications on the subject of education and training brought results.


Human Rights Delegation

In 2018 the Human Rights Delegation handled topics, including matters involving data protection and biometric identifiers from the point of view of data security and privacy, as well as violence against women and domestic violence. The Delegation approved a statement demanding stronger measures to combat violence against women and domestic violence. In addition, workshops were arranged by the Delegation, resulting in the publication of “The Fundamental and Human Rights Situation in Finland - Recommendations of the Human Rights Delegation for the 2019-2023 Government Term” in early 2019. At the same time the recommendations for the 2019-2023 government term were made public.


International cooperation

The HRC participated in European and international cooperative endeavours both as a member of the GANHRI and ENNHRI Boards and as Chair of the Management Board of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). The Centre has been able to actively impact the development of its own networks.


Monitoring the implementation of human rights

There was robust improvement in the way the implementation of human rights was monitored. With regard to the specified themes, statements were issued on the periodic reports on a wider basis than previously, and there were meetings and consultations. This all came about through the existence of a wide network of cooperation. The promotion and monitoring work was carried out with the issuance of statements and opinions and by adopting positions (including unprompted positions) on several themes for domestic and international actors.


Rights of persons with disabilities

The HRC has a special duty to promote, protect and monitor the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in collaboration with the Parliamentary Ombudsman and the Human Rights Delegation. The promotion and monitoring of the CRPD and collaborations with authorities and disabled persons’ organisations were developed, and up-to-date empirical evidence was obtained as a result of an online questionnaire for persons with disabilities.


The Disability Rights Committee (VIOK), which operates under the authority of the Human Rights Delegation, issued a statement on the Government's draft periodic report for the CRPD committee. In addition, VIOK gave a statement at the request of the Human Rights Centre pursuant to a request by the Chancellor of Justice involving the implementation of measures linked with personal hygiene in the residential services for persons with disabilities.


Special theme for 2018

The theme chosen for this year’s report (Part V) was Monitoring of the International Human Rights Treaties and Periodic Reports. The thematic section gives more details about what the work would entail and what benefits it delivers for the Centre, and more generally fundamental and human rights work and the rights of the individuals.


The Annual Report will be published in Finnish, Swedish, and English, exclusively in electronic versions.

Read more about the work of the Human Rights Centre on the website


Further information is available from Sirpa Rautio, the Director of the Human Rights Centre (, +358 9-4321 (switchboard).