December 8, 2023
Albany, NY

Governor Hochul Announces State Landmarks to be Illuminated to Commemorate International Human Rights Day and 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Governor Hochul Announces State Landmarks to be Illuminated to Commemorate International Human Rights Day and 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

New York State Division of Human Rights Releases Annual Report Highlighting Achievements in Past Fiscal Year

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that landmarks would be lit blue on Friday night to commemorate International Human Rights Day, which is observed every year on December 10 in honor of the United Nations General Assembly's adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the milestone document which enshrines the rights that all people are entitled to as human beings, regardless of race, color, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

“New York has the proud distinction of being the first state in the nation to enact a Human Rights Law, and it is with unwavering commitment that we will continue to lead the nation in protecting these fundamental rights,” Governor Hochul said. “Today, we honor the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and look to the future of this great state with optimism and pride as we advance our mission to make New York a welcoming home to all.”

New York State Division of Human Rights Commissioner Maria Imperial said, “Seventy-five years ago, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights enshrined the truth that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. Here in New York State, we celebrate this significant date by continuing our mission of eliminating discrimination, remedying injustice, and promoting equal opportunity, access, and dignity for all New Yorkers.”

New York State holds historical ties to the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Key to the Declaration’s success was the leadership of former First Lady and New York State native Eleanor Roosevelt, who chaired the committee that drafted the Declaration. Roosevelt’s tireless dedication and diplomacy made multinational consensus-building possible, leading to the eventual and unanimous approval of the Declaration by the UN General Assembly.

The New York State Division of Human Rights also today released its annual report highlighting the agency’s activities in Fiscal Year 2023.

The Division’s accomplishments in Fiscal Year 2023 include the launch of the Hate and Bias Prevention Unit (HBPU), which is designed to help communities across the State combat prejudice and hate. Since its launch, HBPU has established 10 regional councils representing every region across the State, and a rapid response initiative, which offers support to communities impacted by hate or bias incidents. Most recently, HBPU launched a new telephone hotline, 844-NO2-HATE, and online form that allows New Yorkers to report hate and bias incidents directly to the unit. HBPU will also be a launching a state-wide media campaign in the coming year and recently released a request for proposals for interested media vendors.

During fiscal year 2023, the Division secured nearly $7 million in compensation to more than 1,000 victims of discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodation. This sum represents the highest total compensation in the past six years. The Division also made important strides in helping victims of workplace sexual harassment by launching a toll-free and confidential workplace sexual harassment hotline, 1-800-HARASS-3, which connects individuals experiencing harassment with experienced pro-bono attorneys.

To commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Human Rights Day, the following New York State landmarks will be lit blue on Friday:

  • One World Trade Center
  • Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge
  • Kosciuszko Bridge
  • The H. Carl McCall SUNY Building
  • State Education Building
  • Alfred E. Smith State Office Building
  • State Fairgrounds - Main Gate & Expo Center
  • Niagara Falls
  • Albany International Airport Gateway
  • MTA LIRR - East End Gateway at Penn Station
  • Empire State Plaza
  • Fairport Lift Bridge Over the Erie Canal
  • Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park

About the New York State Division of Human Rights
The New York State Division of Human Rights is dedicated to eliminating discrimination, remedying injustice, and promoting equal opportunity, access and dignity through enforcement of the Human Rights Law. Our vision is a New York free of discrimination where everyone can fulfill their potential and participate fully in the life of the State. New Yorkers can learn more about the Human Rights Law or report bias and discrimination by visiting dhr.ny.gov.

Contact the Governor's Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474-8418
New York City: (212) 681-4640

Translations

الترجمة إلى العربية
বাংলা অনুবাদ
Traduction en français
Tradiksyon kreyòl ayisyen
Traduzione italiana
Polskie tłumaczenie
Перевод на русский язык
Traducción al español
پیلے رنگ سے نمایاں کردہ ٹیکسٹ
אידישע איבערטייטשונג