Human rights are critical for the the recovery

Human rights are key in shaping the pandemic response, for the public health emergency and the broader impact on people’s lives and livelihoods. The world is facing an unprecedented crisis. At its core is a global public health emergency on a scale not seen for a century, requiring a global response with far-reaching consequences for our economic, social and political lives. The priority is to save lives.  The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated the vulnerability of the least protected in society. It is highlighting deep economic and social inequalities and inadequate health and social protection systems that require urgent attention as part of the public health response.

The instability and fear that the pandemic engenders is exacerbating existing human rights concerns, such as discrimination against certain groups, hate speech, xenophobia, attacks and forced returns of refugees and asylum-seekers, mistreatment of migrants, and sexual and gender-based violence, as well as limited access to sexual and reproductive health and rights. This is not a time to neglect human rights; it is a time when, more than ever, human rights are needed to navigate this crisis in a way that will allow us, as soon as possible, to focus again on achieving equitable sustainable development and sustaining peace.

Secretary-General António Guterres (second from left) attending the opening of the forty-third regular session of the Human Rights Council.

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Protect the Most Vulnerable

The COVID-19 crisis is testing the humanity and resilience of the world at a time when it has been dotted with extreme inequality. As the socioeconomic impact becomes serious, especially as infectious diseases hit vulnerable and marginalized groups, they can step up to support communities in need of business. Without enough resources to protect people from  risks, many people will be in a dangerous situation. With the increasing job losses worldwide, the number of people in such situations will dramatically increase. -Seung Ah Choi

Categories: Society