All States that have written constitutions (the great majority) recognize that certain rights need to be endowed with especially strong protection. Countries that do not have written constitutions, such as Israel,1 New Zealand and the United Kingdom, acknowledge, however, the existence of certain rights which are given precedence above all other rights.2 This is largely based on the acceptance of international human rights covenants, many of which have been adopted within the framework of the United Nations,3 while others have been adopted by specialized UN agencies such as the ILO (the fundamental Conventions), and still some others by regional organizations such as the Council of Europe4 and the Organization of American States.5 The United Kingdom, for example, has passed the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) in which a list of rights and fundamental freedoms is set out in accordance with the European Convention on Human Rights.6 While a number of constitutions, such as those of Australia and the United States of America, do not formally declare a list of fundamental rights, they have been implicitly or explicitly recognized as such in a number of landmark judicial decisions. Whether the fundamental rights are also implied beyond the bounds of legislation, because they fall within the domain of natural law, is a matter for academic discussion.
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- Legal subordination and the fundamental rights of the person: an uneasy cohabitation at the workplace
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- Chapter 5