The Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Ottawa, Ontario
19 December 2008

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights is mandated to explore the subject of human rights, with special but not exclusive reference to Canada, in order to enhance public understanding of human rights, promote respect for others, and encourage reflection and dialogue. 

This museum is the first national museum to be created since 1967 and the first to be located outside of the National Capital Region. It will be built with support from other levels of government, the private sector, and non-governmental organizations.

On April 20, 2007, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that the Government of Canada had reached an agreement with four public and private sector partners to establish the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg. The federal commitment of $100 million was contingent on its partners raising $165 million toward the cost of the museum. The Government’s partners in the project are the Province of Manitoba, the City of Winnipeg, the Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, and the Forks Renewal Corporation.

The Museum was established as a Crown corporation on March 13, 2008, through amendments to the Museums Act.

The Board of Trustees of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights was appointed on August 26, 2008, and is chaired by Arni C. Thorsteinson.

To commemorate the 60th anniversary of the proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 2008, the Museum launched its first virtual exhibit. This exhibit explores the life of John Peters Humphrey, a Canadian legal scholar who was the principal author of the Universal Declaration for Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations in 1948.

The Museum is planned to open to the public in 2012.