What are the functions of the United Nations Sub-Commission on Human Rights?

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Michael Ugulini eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Commission on Human Rights established the United Nations Sub-Commission on Human Rights in 1947. It was originally titled the Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities. In 1999 a vote was held change the Sub-Commission's name. The United Nations Sub-Commission on Human Rights serves as the primary subsidiary body to the Commission on Human Rights. Each year, in Geneva, Switzerland, this Sub-Commission meets for three weeks.

The Commission on Human Rights is the principal policy-making body, which deals with human rights issues. The Commission on Human Rights consists of 53 member Governments. The Sub-Commission consists of 2 experts. This Sub-Commission  has set up working groups and established Special Rapporteurs to help it with specific tasks.

The functions of the Sub-Commission are to take on studies under the assistance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights(UDHR).The UDHR is comprised of 30 articles specifying basic rights guaranteed to each and every individual. The Sub-Commission's functions also include making recommendations to the Commission on Human Rights pertaining to the prevention of discrimination of any type concerning human rights and fundamental freedoms, as well as the protection of racial, national, religious, and linguistic minorities.

In addition, this Sub-Commission additionally engages  work assigned to it by the Commission or The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) (CÉSNU).

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