NHRCK Works Together with Ministry of Justice to Introduce Framework Act on Human Rights Policy
-NHRCK Chairperson meets with Minister of Justice to discuss how to cooperate for the introduction of the bill-
The National Human Rights Commission of Korea(Chairperson Young-ae Choi) and the Ministry of Justice(Minister Beom-kye Park) decided to work together to jointly introduce the Framework Act on Human Rights Policy, which sets out a national policy framework for the promotion and protection of human rights, and give an advance notice of legislation on June 30 2021.
Chairperson Young-ae Choi met with Minister Beom-key Park in the morning of June 30 to discuss how to cooperate for the introduction of a bill.
The Framework Act on Human Rights Policy provides a comprehensive definition of the national human rights framework, including the National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, local governments' duty to protect human rights, domestic implementation of recommendations from international human rights treaty bodies, corporate responsibility to respect human rights and public human rights education. The law, once enforced, will contribute to the establishment of a government-wide national human rights policy framework, thereby reinforcing the role of the central and local governments in protecting human rights in our society.
The joint efforts to introduce the human rights policy act take on greater significance as it is the first time that the Commission and the Ministry work on a bill to enhance human rights protection in our society.
The Framework Act on Human Rights Policy contains the provisions relating to the establishment of a national human rights policy committee and local human rights bodies as well as the appointment of human rights policy officers. In particular, it requires state bodies to maintain cooperation with and respect recommendations and opinions from the Commission.
Secondly, the Act systematically defines the procedures for the establishment of the National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights(NAP), providing the basis for the Commission to present to the government recommendations concerning the NAP and the government to reflect them in establishment of the action plan. The heads of central administrative agencies and city and provincial offices are tasked with devising annual implementation plans and regional plans afterward and the Commission is required to present its opinions in the final assessment of the implementation of the NAP, which will help enhance the normative and enforcement power of the NAP.
Third, the law contains separate parts regarding how to promote domestic implementation of recommendations from international human rights treaty bodies for individual complaints and corporate responsibilities to respect human rights and government roles and responsibilities in this regard to bring it in line with international human rights norms and ensure domestic compliance with international norms.
Lastly, the Act requires state bodies, local municipalities and schools to provide human rights education to increase public awareness on human rights. It sets forth measures to promote cooperation with and secure support from the Commission for human rights education, with a view to ensuring organic and systematic cooperation between different bodies.
Chairperson Choi highlighted at the meeting the important role the Act will play in protecting the people's rights and developing a culture that respects human rights and wished for continued cooperation and communication with the Ministry of Justice for successful implementation of the Act.
Minister Park responded that the Ministry of Justices hopes to further enhance cooperation between the two sides by jointly introducing the legislation and reaffirmed his commitment to working closely with the Commission in enforcement of human rights policies.
The National Human Rights Commission of Korea and the Ministry of Justice, as the two government bodies primarily responsible for the implementation of the Framework Act on Human Rights Policy, continue to cooperate closely to ensure protection of people's rights and establish a permanent human rights protection mechanism.