In this publication you will learn about an important international document called the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP or Declaration). The Declaration explains how the rights of indigenous peoples – including indigenous young people – are to be protected by governments around the world. It applies to indigenous peoples as individuals and as a group. Indigenous young people were actively involved in the development of UNDRIP and they are working hard to make sure governments implement it. This text provides a summary of some of the important language, themes and articles of the document so that young people can continue to play an important role in ensuring the Declaration is fully implemented around the world.
At the end of the publication you will find a list of words (‘Word Bank’) and what they mean. The list will help you understand words that may be new to you.
The adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) was the result and highlight of many years of work. For the approximately 370 million indigenous peoples in some 90 countries around the world, UNDRIP is an expression of their rights and place in the global community.
The cultural and linguistic heritage of indigenous peoples contributes to the world’s diversity. Their knowledge and practices have enhanced respect for the environment and the natural resources of the world’s communities, food security, health and education. Indigenous peoples’ knowledge of traditional medicines, for example, has contributed immensely to protecting the health of both indigenous and non-indigenous peoples.
UNDRIP is the most advanced and comprehensive Declaration on indigenous peoples’ rights.