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The right to food in national constitutions



BANGLADESH Article 15 (Provision of basic necessities)
"It shall be a fundamental responsibility of the State to attain, through planned economic growth, a constant increase of productive forces and a steady improvement of the material and cultural standard of living of the people, with a view to securing to its citizens... the provision of the basic necessities of life, including food, clothing, shelter..."

BRAZIL Article 227 (Right to food for children and teenagers)
"It is the duty of the family, of society, and of the State to ensure children and adolescents, with absolute priority, the right to life, health, food, education, leisure, professional training, culture, dignity, respect, freedom, and family and community life, in addition to safeguarding them against all forms of negligence, discrimination, exploitation, violence, cruelty, and oppression."

COLOMBIA Article 44
"The following are basic rights for children... a balanced diet..."

CONGO Article 34 (Health, Aged, Handicapped)
"The State is the guarantor of public health. Every citizen shall have the right to a level of life sufficient to assure his health, his well-being and that of his family, notably food, clothing, shelter, medical care as well as necessary social services."

CUBA Article 8 (The Socialist State)
" the power of the people and for the people, guarantees:... That no child be left without schooling, food and clothing."

ECUADOR Article 19
"...The right to a standard of living that ensures the necessary health, food, clothing, housing, medical care and social services."

ETHIOPIA Article 90(Social objectives)
"To the extent the country's resources permit, policies shall aim to provide all Ethiopians with access to public health and education, clean water, housing, food and social security."

GUATEMALA Article 51(Protection of Minors and the Elderly)
"The State will protect the physical, mental and moral health of Minors and the Elderly. It will guarantee them their right to food, public health, education, security and social insurance."
Article 99 (Feeding and nutrition) "The State will see to it that the food and the nutrition of the population meet the minimum health requirements. The specialized actions among themselves or with international organizations dedicated to public health to achieve an effective national food delivery system."

HAITI Article 22
"The State recognizes the right of every citizen to decent housing, education, food and social security."

INDIA Article 47 (Duty of the State to raise the level of nutrition and the standard of living and to improve public health)
"The State shall regard the raising of the level of nutrition and the standard of living of its people and the improvement of public health as among its primary duties and, in particular, the State shall endeavour to bring about prohibition of the consumption except for medicinal purpose of intoxicating drinks and of drugs which are injurious to health."

Islamic Republic of IRAN Article 3 (State Goals)
"...The planning of a correct and just economic system, in accordance with Islamic criteria, in order to create welfare, eliminate poverty, and abolish all forms of deprivation with respect to food, housing, work, health care, and the provision of social insurance for all."
Article 43 (Principles)
The economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran, with its objectives of achieving the economic independence of the society, uprooting poverty and deprivation, and fulfilling human needs in the process of development while preserving human liberty, is based on the following criteria: The provision of basic necessities for all citizens: housing, food, clothing hygiene, medical treatment, education, and the necessary facilities for the establishment of a family."

MALAWI Article 13
"The State shall actively promote the welfare and development of the people of Malawi by progressively adopting and implementing policies and legislation aimed at achieving the following goals: Nutrition: To achieve adequate nutrition for all in order to promote good health and self-sufficiency."

NICARAGUA Article 63
"It is the right of Nicaraguans to be protected against hunger. The State shall promote programmes which assure adequate availability and equitable distribution of food."

NIGERIA Article 16
"The State shall assure, within the context of the ideals and objectives for which provisions are made in this constitution,... that suitable and adequate shelter, suitable and adequate food, reasonable living wages, are provided for all citizens."

PAKISTAN Article 38
"The State shall provide basic necessities of life, such as food, clothing, housing, education and medical relief."

PARAGUAY Article 53 (Children)
"Every parent has the right and obligation to care for, to feed, to educate, and to support his children while they are minors. The laws will punish those parents who fail to comply with their duty to provide their children with food..."

SOUTH AFRICA Section 27 (Health care, food, water and social security)
"1) Everyone has the right to have access to:
a) health care services, including reproductive health care; b) sufficient food and water; and c) social security, including, if they are unable to support themselves and their dependants, appropriate social assistance.
2)The state must take reasonable legislative and other measures, within its available resources, to achieve the progressive realization of each of these rights..."
Section 28(Children)
"1) Every child has the right to:
a) a name and a nationality from birth; b) family care or parental care, or to appropriate alternative care when removed from the family environment; c) basic nutrition, shelter, basic health care services and social services..."

SRI LANKA Article 27
"The State is pledged to establish in Sri Lanka a democratic socialist society, the objectives of which include... the realization by all citizens of an adequate standard of living for themselves and their families, including adequate food, clothing and housing...

UGANDA Article 14 (General social and economic objectives)
"The State shall endeavour to fulfil the fundamental rights of all Ugandans to social justice and economic development and shall, in particular, ensure that... all Ugandans enjoy rights and opportunities and access to education, health services, clean and safe water, decent shelter, adequate clothing, food, security and pension and retirements benefits."

UKRAINE Article 48
"Everyone has the right to a standard of living sufficient for himself or herself, and his or her family that includes adequate nutrition, clothing and housing."


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Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Georgia, Lesotho, Saint Christopher and Nevis and San Marino.

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