A balance between ensuring the safety of people and safeguarding their rights ought to be possible by keeping human rights standards at the forefront of the public health agenda and any national, regional, or global strategy to fight the pandemic.
By Chris Levick, WFD Regional Director, Europe & Central Asia Governments around the world have introduced emergency measures to fight the coronavirus, often alongside significant financial support packages designed to cushion the economic impacts of the virus and ensure livelihoods. Within Europe we have seen some extreme examples: The Hungarian parliament – with its hefty [...]
The Government of Nepal has invoked the Infectious Disease Act 1964 to battle coronavirus, including through enforcing quarantine. The Legislation Management Committee of the National Assembly has announced that it will conduct post-legislative scrutiny of the 57-year old law as part of its role to scrutinise government.
In April 2020 almost 200 students in North Macedonia logged in to online sessions empowering them be active members of the academic community and society. Due to the measures to protect against COVID-19 in the country, students were among the first groups to change their lives with the closing down of schools and universities mid-March. [...]
In Nepal, MPs staying at home during the coronavirus lockdown go online to talk and learn about legislative process, customising social media presence and online security.
One factor seems to dictate the extent to which governments have been able to respond successfully to the pandemic: political trust. In fact, existing research suggests that political trust may be the glue which holds democracies together. But, outside of Western democracies, we don’t know all that much about political trust, or about how political institutions like parliaments might built it up. WFD is looking into it.
By Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons and Patron of Westminster Foundation for Democracy
UPDATE AT 24/04/2020 at 08.40AM BST: We can now confirm that Mr Ravio Patra, who was arrested two days ago (22 April) in Jakarta, has now been released from police custody. He is safe and well. We are aware a member of our team in Indonesia, Mr Ravio Patra, has been arrested last night (22 [...]
Civil society organisations (CSOs) are a channel through which citizens can engage constructively with government to make sure that adequate services are provided, helping to build more inclusive and accountable democracies. Their role is especially important during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as people’s freedoms are curtailed and usual channels of engagement with government are [...]