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World News: UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies call for human rights approach in fighting COVID-19 March 26,2020   |  Source: OHCHR

The Chairpersons of the 10 UN Treaty Bodies* on Tuesday urged global leaders to ensure that human rights are respected in government measures to tackle the public health threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. “Only by including all people in COVID-19 strategies can the pandemic be combatted,” said Hilary Gbedemah, Chair of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women and current head of the group that brings together the respective committee chairs.

The 10 experts called on States to adopt measures to protect the rights to life and health, and to ensure access to health care to all who need it, without discrimination. They urged governments to take extra care of those particularly vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19, including older people, people with disabilities, minorities, indigenous peoples, refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, people deprived of their liberty, homeless people, and those living in poverty. They also stressed that women are at a disproportionately high risk because in many societies they are the main caregivers for sick family members. “No one should be denied health care because of stigma, or because they belong to a group that might be marginalized,” said Gbedemah. “States need to provide targeted support – including

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