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Welcome. This space gathers our collective knowledge and ideas relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some tips as you get started:

Click here to search this space by keyword, or to browse by issue area. To narrow down your results, click the terms in the left-hand column.

You can explore our most popular topics here, or see most recent activity here.

For quick reference, here are links to some key discussions:

  • How do we defend the rights of vulnerable communities affected by lockdowns, quarantines, and other containment measures? Join discussions here.
  • How can we ensure the safety and health of our frontline justice defenders and our communities? Check out these resources.
  • How can we adapt our methods, and convert our grassroots work into remote work? Read these.

The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented. We are dealing with a lot of unknowns. But one thing is clear: now more than ever, the ability to know, use, and shape the law is critical. Containment measures are placing vulnerable communities at even greater risk, and emergency actions are being used to undermine democratic protections.

This is a time to lean on and learn from each other. Let us support each other in these turbulent times. Use this space to post questions and suggestions for adapting our work during the pandemic. No idea is too small. Every thought may help another person to overcome a challenge that is preventing them from supporting communities in need.

Thank you for joining us, and may you all stay safe and healthy.

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A post was split to a new topic: Building trust while working remotely

Thank you for providing this space for us to discuss. In these trying times, we find it most important to ensure solid support systems, especially for our frontliners and healthworkers.

The rapid rate at which the virus is spreading in the Philippines has led to the declaration of State of Calamity. The Luzon island, which is home to the capital of the country, has been on enhanced community quarantine since March 18 and is expected to end on April 13. The basic policy is for citizens to stay at home and avoid going out at all costs. However, due to the seemingly lack of planning, the most vulnerable groups still found themselves on the streets during the first few days since the quarantine. The quarantine was set in motion without concrete economic measures that will support those living below the poverty line or those whose subsistence depend on a daily wage. It was only after much clamor did the government announce its ways to support these communities.

Part of this quarantine is the implementation of curfew hours, where citizens are not allowed to be outside of their homes between 8pm and 5am. Checkpoints have also been installed in certain areas of the country. Police and other security forces are out on the streets making sure that only those authorized persons are out.The security forces and local government units are allowed to arrest those violating quarantine and curfew policies. These particular measures raised flags on human rights groups because these are areas for abuse.

Because of this, certain human rights groups and legal organizations have volunteered to receive questions or complaints regarding human rights abuses during the quarantine. Online legal consultation is practiced to assist those who need legal advice.

Are there any updates from your country that you would like to share? @Yadana @AtcharaChanOkul @maaliniramalo

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Good morning to everyone, Hope you are doing well. Stay healthy and positive. I am happy to stay in touch with all of you. Warm greetings, Alexandar

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Thank you for the nice and informative article. During containment the government shall provide food, water and electricity.Most of the countries in Africa have high part of thier population been poor and living from hand to mouth.I believe if there justice and accountability in resource use by the government (s) and they are prepared earliy populations can be safed.In where i come from there are no food reserves and the moment there is lockdown there there will be starvation. Who will be responsible?

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Thank you Abigail and the entire team NAMATI. Indeed our safety and that of our communities is in a suffocating and unpredictable level. In Kenya, I heard some grassroots saying that the Covid-19 won’t affect young people not up to today that I am hearing a 19yr old student is confirmed positive so it is my opinion to share that our community should forget such misconceptions for their own safety.

The common man has been suffering even before the pandemic due to lack of justice and now is suffering hunger and restrictions under lockdowns. I think stay at home method is one of the best ways to protect ourselves so far,BUT staying at home and starving? Or going out to win the daily bread and then eventually suffer or even kick the bucket because of Covid-19?

Lastly but not the least, as provided by the technology, I think we can still help the vulnerable ones either via SMS platforms, phone calls, video conferencing meetings, distribution of leave behind materials e.t.c

:pray::pray:

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The challenge is greater where people do not have access to water to spare in washing their hands to stay safe. In such communities do any know what best sensitization of hand washing can help?

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Thank you, @fmybordey, for sharing your difficult situation. It is important to remain vigilant, and I’m glad to see that online legal consultation is an option. I, too, would like to hear more about comparative experiences in Southeast Asia. Perhaps members within the same regional context will have more lessons to share with each other.

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@Cadala and @AhmedMohamed, access to food and water is indeed a critical concern when under quarantine or practicing social distancing. This is why governments should be exploring economic support for those whose livelihoods and mobility are disrupted by the pandemic. Also, while trips outside of the home should limited, essential trips to restock food and provisions should be permitted.

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@DennisEkwere, perhaps you might find this resource from fellow network member @lorenzowakefield useful. Our recent brief may also provide insight. Here is a relevant excerpt:

Hand sanitizer is sold out at all the shops, and I don’t always have access to water for hand washing. Can I make it hand sanitizer myself? —There are many ways to make hand sanitizer. To be effective, choose a formula that’s at least 60% alcohol and only follow instructions from trusted sources. You can find WHO’s guidelines for preparing hand sanitizer here. This is a very thorough guide on the different substances and formulas that can be used. If that’s overwhelming, you can follow the guidance in this article. The simplest recipe is 3 parts isopropyl alcohol to 1 part aloe vera gel.

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Absolutely, Government intervention is needed

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A post was split to a new topic: New York City jails have an alarmingly high infection rate, according to an analysis by the Legal Aid Society

Yes, the situation in the prisons probably is bad. Hopefully there are wise government officials which can handle this issue. I am impressed by the response of the official institutions in Canada. Regards, Alexandar

Thank you for raising such critical issues for discussion. In Zimbabwe we definitely have concerns on the impact of lock downs on vulnerable communities. The people in the rural areas are the majority and they lack resources to stock up on food or medication . Today we started day 1 in lock down. We have a very high unemployment rate and many people survive from informal trading, This lock down will definitely impact the livelihoods of many. In addition, the lack of access to information is definitely a challenge. This is a critical moment when everyone has to get the relevant information in promotion of the right to health. The best that we have done so far is to issue regular press statements reminding the Government to take steps to promote human rights as provided for in our Constitution. We have also in the past seen the State Security agents using excessive force on civilians. We have also called on them to refrain from using excessive force and to conduct themselves appropriately in terms of the Constitution and the law. Apart from this, there is need for continued awareness raising on COVID-19. We have called on reduced data access costs to ensure access to information.

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https://covid19.who.int/

Dear colleagues, As a part of the scientific research on “The European Union in the time of coronavirus: When public health dictates the politics”, we have prepared a short online questionnaire. I kindly ask you to take five minutes of your time and contribute to this research project, which will help us better understand the situation, activities and perspectives of the European Union in the time of coronavirus.

The questionnaire is available at: EU and COVID – 19 pandemic

Thank you for your time.