Rights in a pandemic – Lockdowns, rights and lessons from HIV in the early response to COVID-19

Sep 23, 2020 | Shalesha Majors

During the early response to COVID-19 UNAIDS received numerous reports of interruptions to HIV services and disturbing human violations against vulnerable and marginalized populations. The experience of the response to HIV has proved that violations of human rights during a pandemic undermine trust, harm individuals, and set back public health responses.

This new report outlines 10 immediate areas for action for governments towards building effective, rights-based COVID-19 responses. These include taking proactive measures to ensure that people, particularly people in vulnerable groups, can access HIV treatment and prevention services, designating and supporting essential workers, including community-led organizations, and implementing measures to prevent and address gender-based violence.


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