Closer than ever
APC understands that we are all dealing with unprecedented circumstances as we face the challenges, fear and uncertainty brought on by the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. We know it impacts our work, our personal lives and the lives of those we care about. Each country is tackling the situation differently, so the contexts we find ourselves in are as diverse as the ways we find to navigate shifting conditions.
In these exceptional times, we wish to send our solidarity and appreciation for connecting with us. While we are distancing ourselves physically, we continue to stay closer than ever to each other and share tools and resources as well as support. We also want to examine how we can continue to promote human rights online in the context of a global pandemic. We are all facing this problem together but we know it affects different countries and communities in different ways. Therefore, we would like to channel the strength of our network to share some important resources that we hope will be empowering, enlightening and reassuring.
Below you will find articles and insights shared by our community, which has been working on human rights and technology issues for over 30 years. We will be updating these lists on a regular basis, so please feel free to connect with us if you have some resources to share.
In a crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important that people are able to obtain information that will help them stay safe and aware of an evolving situation, and initiatives like these are crucial for reducing the traditional barriers to information that prevent global access.
EngageMedia, an organisation with significant experience in working remotely, has some tips and tools for those now working from home because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A virtual dialogue on collective safety, co-convened by Just Associates (JASS), IM-Defensoras and APC, coincided with the launch of a new JASS tookit featuring resources for women human rights defenders.
Many nations are considering proposals to use digital technologies to confront the COVID-19 pandemic. This joint statement calls on the OECD to ensure the protection of privacy and other fundamental human rights in the use of these technologies.
Technology has become a crucial part of the COVID-19 response, and this has raised some serious questions: Can privacy and public health security go hand in hand? Is it enough to use safeguards such as transparency and the use of intrusive technology only when absolutely necessary?
This is my fourth blog on the impact which the corona virus is having on the digital society. This time I’ll comment on internet/digital governance. Is this the time for re-set?
Many countries today are turning to digital technologies to provide information as well as for monitoring and controlling people infected with the virus, which alerts us to the potential impact of these technologies on people’s fundamental rights.
In the last two weeks of March 2020, the government issued several directives to Myanmar telecom operators ordering them to block at least 221 websites. We believe that the government’s order to block these websites lacks an adequate legal basis and is in violation of international human rights law.
Over 100 organisations from around the world signed a joint statement stressing that digital surveillance to fight COVID-19 can only be justified if it respects human rights, and setting out conditions that must be met before the use of surveillance technology to fight the pandemic.
While governments and health workers worldwide are focused on combating the COVID-19 pandemic, they are also busy fighting another related pandemic that cuts across all sectors of society: a massive “infodemic” equally as wide-reaching and harmful.