Lorie Graham, 2010, The Right to Education and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Suffolk University Law School Research Paper, N°10-61.
This document is part of a larger study being conducted for the ILA Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The study covers three independent, yet interrelated articles of the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (“Declaration”): Article 14 on the right to education, Article 15 on the right to non-discrimination and accuracy in public information, and Article 16 on the right to media. The study is divided into three parts, each part discussing a separate article of the Declaration. This part of the study covers Article 14. In each part of the study there is a brief discussion of the history and meaning of the article in question. Understanding the origins and histories of the rights subsumed within these articles helps us to understand some of the purposes and principles articulated in the Preamble of the U.N. Declaration. They include, among other things, the need to address “historical injustices” (including “doctrines, policies, and practices” that promote “superiority of peoples or individuals”), to respect and promote cultural “diversity and richness,” to ensure that “indigenous families and communities retained shared responsibility for the upbringing, training, education and well-being of their children,” and to reaffirm “the fundamental importance of the right of self-determination of all peoples” (Preamble, UN Declaration). History similarly provides context from which States and indigenous peoples can interpret and apply the various provisions of the Declaration. Each part also includes a detailed discussion of the international legal framework surrounding the article. Additionally, as a compliment to and further articulation of international law, regional laws and domestic practices are briefly discussed and explored. Each part of the study ends with a discussion of relevant issues that need further exploration.