To uphold the concepts and universal ideals of human rights, to enforce constitutional safeguards for basic human rights, and to abide by international human rights requirements, the Legislative Yuan approved the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), and the Act to Implement the ICCPR and the ICESCR (hereafter the Two Covenants) was passed into law on March 31, 2009. The Act to Implement the ICCPR and the ICESCR was promulgated on April 22, 2009, and entered into force on December 10 of that same year. The instruments of ratification for the two covenants were signed on May 14, 2009.
Considering such factors as the UN's Paris Principles, our constitutionally based political system, current national situation, division of labor among the relevant government arms, and the operation of other countries' human rights protection agencies, an ad hoc task force for the Human Rights Consultative Committee under the Office of the President (hereafter the committee) was set up in accordance with Article 28 of the Basic Act Governing the Organization of Central Government Agencies. With each member serving a two-year term, the committee was officially established and commenced operations by holding its first meeting on December 10, 2010.
President Tsai Ing-wen took office on May 20, 2016 and soon after, on May 27, approved the committee's continued operation to promote and protect human rights. At the first meeting of the fourth committee, the president stated that “human rights may be a universal value, but they will always require local action to be truly achieved.” She encouraged all the people of Taiwan to "set standards higher while getting more deeply involved in society," so that human rights in Taiwan will become the gold standard for other countries.