The right to an adequate standard of living is a fundamental human right. It is part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that was accepted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 10, 1948.
Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of him/herself and of his/her family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his/her control.
Furthermore, it has been written down in article 11 of the United Nations' International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
The predecessor of this right, the Freedom from Want, is one of the Four Freedoms that American President Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke out at his State of the Union of January 6, 1941. According to Roosevelt it is a right every human being everywhere in the world should have. Roosevelt described his third right as follows:
The third is freedom from want which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants, everywhere in the world.
- United Nations, Universal Declaration of Human Rights
- Roosvelt, Franklin Delano (January 6, 1941) The Four Freedoms, American Rhetoric
- Alfreðsson, Guðmundur S.; Eide, Asbjørn (1999). The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: A Common Standard of Achievement. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. p. 524. ISBN 90-411-1168-9.