Social, Economic, and Cultural Rights: The Inter-American Court at a Crossroads
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights: Theory and Practice, Present and Future (Intersentia Press, 2015)
19 Pages Posted: 6 Jul 2015 Last revised: 25 Mar 2016
Date Written: June 30, 2015
This chapter examines how the Inter-American Court of Human Rights has addressed economic, social and cultural rights. First, I briefly consider the primary Inter-American treaties on the subject: the American Convention on Human Rights, the Protocol of San Salvador, and the Charter of the Organization of American States. Second, I assess how the Inter-American Court has interpreted those instruments. While the Tribunal has increasingly recognized economic, social and cultural rights through various means, Article 26 of the American Convention on Human Rights -- the Convention’s most explicit provision on this category of rights -- has largely been avoided. I consider reasons for this avoidance, and then evaluate the alternative means the Court has used to protect economic, social and cultural rights.
Keywords: human rights, Inter-American Court of Human Rights, social rights, cultural rights, economic rights, American Convention on Human Rights, Protocol of San Salvador
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