Human rights in the Netherlands

In the Netherlands human rights are protected by national legislation and international conventions. But even so, human rights can sometimes come under pressure. For example, developments in IT can create new privacy risks.

Protecting human rights in the Netherlands

Central government plays an active role in protecting human rights in the Netherlands. One of those rights is protection of privacy. Advances in IT can pose a threat to people’s privacy. The government continually monitors whether new policies or legislation are needed in order to better protect human rights.

The National Action Plan on Human Rights sets out how the government protects and promotes human rights in the Netherlands.

Human rights in the Dutch Constitution

In the Netherlands many human rights are laid down in chapter 1 of the Constitution. These rights are also referred to as fundamental rights. A well-known example is article 1 of the Constitution, which says that everyone in the Netherlands must be treated equally in equal circumstances. Article 1 has been elaborated in separate legislation, such as the Equal Treatment Act.

International human rights agreements

The Netherlands is a party to international human rights agreements, many of which derive from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Netherlands has signed and ratified the following human rights agreements: