The spread of COVID-19 in Africa, so far, has reportedly been lower and caused fewer fatalities than on other continents, but the World Health Organisation (WHO) fears a rapid acceleration of the spread of the pandemic in the coming months.i This would have a devastating outcome due to the region’s fragile health-care systems and particularly devastating consequences for the marginalised and vulnerable Indigenous communities on the continent.
IWGIA welcomed Kathrin Wessendorf as its new Executive Director On 1 April 2020. Kathrin is a trained anthropologist from the University of Basel who brings with her over 20 years’ experience working with the Indigenous Peoples movement, helping to promote, protect and defend the rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Business and Human Rights, Rights to Land, Indigenous Women and COVID-19
// IWGIA appoints new Board chair and Director - March 2020 Newsletter
Photo: Chris Erni // IWGIA
By – Dilip Chakma, Convenor, Indigenous Lawyers Association of India (ILAI) and Paritosh Chakma, Advisor, ILAI
Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been declared as a pandemic and its impact on the world is yet to be fully assessed. Indigenous peoples living on the margins of the society are unlikely to be considered in the scheme of responses and reactions by most of the States.
Indigenous Peoples at increased risk due to coronavirus
- Indigenous Peoples Human Rights Defenders are more at risk of being targeted, as movement is restricted and governments broaden laws
- Already marginalised, Indigenous Peoples chronically lack proper access to health resources and information, further exacerbating the risk to their communities in times of emergency
- Indigenous Peoples’ are responding to the pandemic using self-determined protection mechanisms
COPENHAGEN | 30 MARCH 2020 | As the spread of COVID-19 continues, Indigenous Peoples worldwide are in increasing danger of losing their lives and having their rights stripped away.