This snapshot, taken on
, shows web content acquired for preservation by The National Archives. External links, forms and search may not work in archived websites and contact details are likely to be out of date.
The UK Government Web Archive does not use cookies but some may be left in your browser from archived websites.

Human rights

Dignity and justice for all

DFID is committed to working with others to enhance the human rights of poor people.

Every state in the world recognises human rights as the goals we want to achieve. Every state in the world has agreed to be bound by human rights laws and recognises the legitimacy of the system. This unique international consensus on values and objectives has huge legal and moral force. We need to do more to harness its potential in working to eliminate poverty and achieve the fullest human development.

Choose an topic below to find out more.

Just the facts

We have a wealth of information about the fight against world poverty on our site. Click on a topic below to find out more information.

Human rights and justice

Human rights are our right to life and to a decent standard of living, our right to food, water and shelter; they are also our right to the highest attainable standard of health, to education, to decent work, to freedom from discrimination. Human rights are our right to accountable government and to participate in political and cultural life. If we achieve human rights, we achieve development.

Social protection

Social protection is central to DFID's poverty reduction agenda. It can help maintain progress on the Millennium Development Goals and protect the poor during crises. Social protection can be a powerful tool for transforming the lives of poor people and breaking the transmission of poverty across generations.


Migration can be a positive force for development.  DFID works to help developing countries plan for the impact of migration and to harness the benefits of safe, legal migration for poverty reduction and development. In DFID’s programmes and policies, there is growing recognition of how migration and migrants can help development. In our work, we seek to improve knowledge about the links between migration and development, and to work with others, within the Government and internationally, to  ensure that the positive impact migration can have is reflected in policy-making. 

Social exclusion

Social exclusion is when people are disadvantaged because of who they are. This can be because of their ethnicity, race, religion, sexual orientation, caste, descent, gender, age, disability, HIV status, and migrant status or where they live. Discrimination occurs in public institutions, such as the legal system or education and health services, as well as social institutions like the household.

Back to How we fight poverty