Rights belong to individuals and are not granted by the State. Human rights are entitlements that human beings have.
The purpose of recognising and protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms is:
- to preserve the dignity of individuals and communities.
- to promote social justice.
- to allow for the realisation of the potential of all human beings.
- to show that it is the duty of the State and every State organ and state officers (together sometimes referred to as duty bearers) to observe, respect, protect and promote fundamental freedom and individual rights.
- to ensure that every individual in the society is covered including women, older members of society, persons with disabilities, children, youth, members of minority or marginalised communities, and religious or cultural communities.
- to ensure that every person has the right to start court proceedings when a right or fundamental freedom has been denied, violated or infringed, or is threatened.