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 this brief submission, APC identifies the nexus between domestic violence and online gender-based violence in the context of COVID-19, drawing on some issues to consider from country-led and regional case studies.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown why the protection of human rights online is more important now than ever before. The internet has been a gateway for access to critical information, services and opportunities available to many people for the first time, as noted by the GSMA mobile gender gap report.
Upon the confirmation of the first COVID-19 case in Kenya, the government enacted various legislation to deal with the pandemic. While the measures were well intended, the manner in which existing laws have been implemented has caused some concern among civil society organisations.
Yes, we’ve been able to substitute digital ways of doing things for the ways we’ve previously done them across much of our lives – or, at least, some of us have. But it’s proved more partial and less universal than some expected, which poses questions for the future.
Gender-based violence against women and girls remains a global threat to the public health of women and girls during emergencies. As the COVID-19 pandemic deepens the economic and social stress, coupled with restricted movement and social isolation measures, gender-based violence against women and girls is increasing exponentially.
APC welcomes the invitation of the Human Rights Council’s Special Procedures to reflect on the impacts of COVID-19 on the exercise of human rights offline and online.
Cracks within the Namibian education system have been exposed by COVID-19, and the detrimental effects they pose to the right to development and access to knowledge, as set out in Principle 7 of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms, have increasingly become apparent.
For decades, the internet has not reached all areas in Sudan proving the lack of real governmental effort to implement the principles of the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms.
Rudi International released an op-ed with the aim of drawing attention to the importance of access to the internet during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and to offer suggestions on how to ensure and enforce internet rights and freedoms.
The analysis of the sphere of movement building and internet governance in North Africa leads inevitably to assess the shrinking of digital space and online mobilisation during the COVID-19 pandemic in the region.