NHRCK Chairperson - Minister of Justice vows to make the joint effort in protecting human rights
- The Minister’s visit is a follow-on of the last meeting in June between the Chairperson and the Minister regarding the joint legislation of ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ -
- Important momentum for the strengthening of NHRCK-Ministry of Justice coordination -
The National Human Rights Commission of Korea Chairperson Young-ae Choi met with the Minister of Justice Beom-kye Park to discuss the ways to push ahead the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ and cooperate the matters concerning Human Rights protection.
Minister Park’s visit is a follow-on visit of the meeting on June 30, where the Chairperson and the Minister discussed the joint introduction of the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ and future cooperations between the two agencies.
The NHRCK and the Ministry of Justice exchanged opinions on the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’, which just went through the process of advance legislation notice as of August 9, and pending human rights issues. The main contents of the discussion are as follows.
1. Current status of the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ and follow-on measures
The ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’, jointly legislated by the Commission and the Ministry of Justice, stipulated comprehensive human rights system of a state, including the establishment of ‘National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights(NAP)’, the responsibility of local governments to protect human rights, the domestic implementation of recommendations from international human rights treaty bodies, corporate responsibility to respect human rights and public human rights education.
‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ is expected to reinforce the process of setting directions and implementing human rights policies, as the law includes the government’s duty to respect the NHRCK recommendations. NHRCK will play the role in supporting the establishment and operation of human rights bodies in local governments, submitting human rights NAP recommendations and promoting human rights in businesses and supporting relevant education.
The NHRCK and the Ministry will continue to strive to successfully introduce ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ and make efforts together to place the National Human Rights Policy Committee under the office of the Prime Minister and have the Prime Minister chair the Committee.
2. Welcoming the Ministry of Justice's effort to resolve pending human rights issues
Regarding the Commission’s recommendation to introduce Universal Birth Registration for all children outlined on ‘the Second Guideline for the Migrants’, the Ministry is preparing to submit a bill to protect the unregistered foreign children, who are essentially in the blind spot of human rights, by introducing Birth Registration System for the unregistered foreign children.
As for the issue of improving the treatment of the inmates in correction centers, which the NHRCK have recommended to the Ministry of Justice after a series of investigation on relevant cases, the Ministrer said the Ministry of Justice is devising measures to improve the situation in various issues concerning the matter, including center overcrowding, air conditioning and heating, medical care and the right to have external communication for the inmates.
Ministry of Justice, together with the NHRCK, is operating ‘Human Rights Monitoring System’ from April 2021 to ensure the implementation of the NHRCK recommendation and NAP.
The National Human Rights Commission of Korea welcomed the efforts being made by the Ministry of Justice to protect the human rights of the public, and asked the Ministry to actively engage in pending human rights issues in Korea.
3. NHRCK requests
The NHRCK requested the Ministry of Justice to coordinate on legislating Equality Act in order to stop the hatred and discrimination in our communities which exacerbated during the pandemic, and achieve social integration.
The Commission also asked that the recommendations from the NHRCK be thoroughly considered in setting the fourth Human Rights NAP goals, as the third Human Rights NAP end in 2022.
□ The visit of the Minister of Justice to the NHRCK after the joint legislation of the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ will become an important momentum to strengthen cooperation between the two agencies.
□ The NHRCK Chairperson Young-ae Choi said "the trust is established between the Commission and the Ministry to fully enact the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’ with frequent visits on both sides. The NHRCK hopes to continue to make joint effort with the Ministry of Justice to resolve pending human rights issues and to protect rights of the marginalised people."
□ The Minister of Justice Beom-kye Park said “the Ministry of Justice will continue to make effort to provide necessary assistance to foreign children residing in Korea for an extended period of time by successfully legislating the Universal Birth Registration system. The Ministry will also coordinate closely with the NHRCK on introducing various human rights policies, including the provision of improved treatment to the inmates in correction centers and the establishment of NAP."
□ The National Human Rights Commission of Korea and the Ministry of Justice will continue to coordinate to legislate the ‘Framework Act on Human Rights Policy’, and work together on various human rights issues concerning correction center inmates, migrant workers and their children, human rights at workplace and refugees.