Statement - COVID-19

These are exceptional times. While the COVID-19 outbreak is creating challenges for everyone in our society, it is particularly difficult for those living in vulnerable circumstances.

Equality, dignity and respect must remain at the centre of our efforts to flatten the curve. In the weeks and months ahead, the steps we take to slow the spread of this virus must consider the rights and needs of those most vulnerable. People living in poverty, women and children fleeing domestic violence, people living in shelters, on the street or at risk of homelessness, people with disabilities or those with health conditions, people with mental health issues, older people living alone or in institutions, and people in correctional institutions must not be forgotten or ignored.

Just as we must protect those who are disproportionately impacted, we must also be vigilant and call out racism and intolerance that often rears its ugly head in times of stress and uncertainty.

The Commission is finding new and different ways to collaborate, communicate and continue to do our important work. We will continue to receive and process discrimination complaints.  We will continue to serve Canadians and advocate for a society where everyone is valued and respected.

It is time to stand together and support one another. We must all look out for each other and lend a helping hand where we can, especially to those bearing the greatest burden. Together, we will get through these difficult times.

Some Important United Nations Statements on COViD-19 and Human Rights

Coronavirus: Human rights need to be front and centre in response, says Bachelet

COVID-19: Who is protecting the people with disabilities? – UN rights expert

“Housing, the front line defence against the COVID-19 outbreak,” says UN expert