Lockdowns compounding lack of freedom. The COVID-19 pandemic has made voicing one’s views and protesting together impossible at times. But has this led to total silence? No. People across the globe have managed to express themselves, alone or together, offline and online, in new and creative ways.
Having underestimated the SARS-CoV-2 virus and politicised its control, Brazil faces an extreme public health crisis. At the heart of the handling of the pandemic by its government lies an anti-human rights rhetoric derived from far-right populist politics.
COVID-19 increased challenges to providing inclusive education for children with disabilities in Zimbabwe. Although alternative programmes have been introduced, these rely heavily on remote learning which excludes many children with disabilities, due to lack of resources, technology, support and training.
Criminalisation of sex work in Uganda has increased violence against sex workers and left them vulnerable to violation of their socio-economic rights to work, food, housing and health services during the enforcement of public health measures to counter the spread of COVID-19.
What are the current international standards regarding the restrictions imposed by states on the freedom of assembly? While certain limitations are necessary for the protection of public health, states should bear in mind the scope of their international obligations.
Intersectional discrimination against people on the move underpins inadequate responses to COVID-19. The right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications clearly demands substantive racial equality when designing economic and public health measures to address the pandemic.