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COVID-19 and OHCHR Special Procedures

27/05/2020 - 12:38

The pandemic has had an immense impact on all of our lives, and the path to a new normality is in many ways still uncertain. Numerous human rights mechanisms, including Special Procedures mandates, have already raised their voices to warn about the impact of the pandemic on human rights and to provide guidance about the human rights issues to keep in mind when taking measures to counter it (see the dedicated page here).

For their next thematic reports to the General Assembly or the Human Rights Council, a group of Special Procedures mandate holders have decided to analyse more closely the effects of the crisis and have joined together to develop a questionnaire. The questionnaire is meant to assist the human rights experts to obtain information and elaborate comprehensive recommendations on the measures taken by national, federal and local governments to protect their population and ensure the enjoyment of human rights, including particular groups at risk of discrimination or social exclusion. It consists of a section with joint questions for all mandates, and specific questions for each mandate.

The Special Rapporteur in the field of Cultural Rights, Ms. Karima Bennoune, is part of this group. Her report of March 2021 to the Human Rights Council will focus on the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the exercise of cultural rights and on the role of culture and cultural rights in responding to the pandemic.

The joint questionnaire is attached and can also be consulted online on this page. Questions of particular interest to the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights are published on page 9, and you are also invited to respond to the common questions.

Submissions should be sent electronically no later than 19 June 2020 to registry@ohchr.orgusing the email title: “Response to joint questionnaire of special procedures”.