Event information

4 June 2020, 16:00-17:30

Right On: Access to Information and the Safety of Journalists in Times of Crisis

Right On

In times when public authorities must take significant decisions that affect public health, civil liberties and people’s prosperity, the public’s right to access information about such decisions is vital. Governments must, under international human rights law, protect the right to freedom of expression, including the right to seek, receive, and impart information of all kinds, regardless of frontiers. In times of crisis, the provision of reliable information in accessible formats to all, including by ensuring access to the internet, is crucial for governments’ efforts to protect the public.

Free, independent, plural and diverse media have proven to be an indispensable ally of governments and public authorities in informing the public, enabling individuals to exercise their rights to seek and receive information and to develop opinions so that they can make informed decisions and appropriate steps to protect themselves and their communities. Furthermore, ensuring media pluralism and strengthening professional journalism plays an important role in countering harmful mis- and disinformation. In this context, more than ever, protecting journalists and media workers must include not only their physical but also their legal and economic safety. Attacks on journalists must be followed by effective investigations with a view of prosecuting and punishing those responsible.

This webinar will look at challenges for the right to access to information in times when most governments need to come up with strategies to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on their societies, including its human rights impacts and the repercussions on their health systems and economies. It will discuss the importance of the right to access to information and of free, independent, plural and diverse media for inclusive and peaceful societies and democracies, for holding public institutions and officials accountable and for good governance.

Panelists will also consider the specific, increased risks for journalists reporting on governments’ social and economic policies and the importance of an enabling environment for journalism, which includes their economic safety.

The webinar is organised by Austria, Canada and the Netherlands in partnership with the RightOn initiative and co-sponsored by members of the core groups on the resolutions on Freedom of Expression and Safety of Journalists at the UN Human Rights Council.

Speakers

  • Michelle Bachelet, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  • Agnes Callamard, UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions
  • Fatou Jagne Senghore, Human Rights Expert, specialised in the African regional system of human rights, freedom of expression, and access to information

Registration

To join the discussion, you need to register here.

Change of Time

This RightOn event will exceptionally take place on Thursday 4 June at 16:00.

Video

Right On: Access to Information and the safety of journalists in times of crisis

In this Right On online event, panelists discussed challenges for the right to access to information in times when most governments need to come up with strategies to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Right On’: The Online Web Chat

‘Right On’ is a new digital initiative – co-organized by the Geneva Academy, the Geneva Human Rights Platform, the Geneva Internet Platform, the DiploFoundation, the Universal Right Group, the Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex, as well as the Permanent Missions of Denmark, Norway and the Netherlands to the United Nations in Geneva  –  that will keep the human rights dialogue going during these COVID-19 times.

Every Wednesday at 15:00, experts and practitioners will discuss key human rights issues related to the current health crisis.

Location

Online event.

Access

To join the discussion, you need to register here.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

Flags of the Geneva Human Rights Platform on the Mont-Blanc Bridge News

The Flags of the Geneva Human Rights Platform Fly on the Mont-Blanc Bridge

2 June 2020

From today until Sunday 7 June, flags with the Geneva Human Rights Platform logo will be flying on the Mont-Blanc Bridge.

Read more

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at the UN in Geneva (room of the UN Human Rights Council News

UN Secretary General Refers to our Work in his Latest Report on the Status of the Human Rights Treaty Body System

7 February 2020

In his latest report to the UN General Assembly on the status of the human rights treaty body system, António Guterres refers to our work on the future of UN treaty bodies.

Read more

Logo of the Atlas Network Event

Women's perspectives on a career in international law

15 July 2020, 13:00-14:15

In this online event co-organized with the ATLAS Network, prominent women in international law will share their experience and advice through an interactive discussion.

Read more

Egypt, Cairo, 2011: Makeshift barricade outside interior ministry gate. Short Course

The Right to Life and the Right of Peaceful Assembly in Transitions

Fall 2020

This online course will examine the protection afforded by international human rights law in these contexts, with a specific focus on the right to peaceful assembly – which is at the heart of such movements –, and the right to life – which is often violated during such transitional moments.

Read more

Panel Discussion: Project

Treaty Body Members’ Platform

Started in January 2014

The Treaty Body Members’ Platform connects experts in UN treaty bodies with each other as well as with Geneva-based practitioners, academics and diplomats to share expertise, exchange views on topical questions and develop synergies.

Read more

Data connections with a man's shadow on the back Project

HUMAN RIGHTS, BIG DATA AND TECHNOLOGY PROJECT

Started in May 2016

We are a partner of the Human Rights, Big Data and Technology Project, housed at the University of Essex’s Human Rights Centre, which aims to map and analyse the human rights challenges and opportunities presented by the use of big data and associated technologies. It notably examines whether fundamental human rights concepts and approaches need to be updated and adapted to meet the new realities of the digital age.

Read more

Cover page of the manual Publication

#ESCR AND #SDGs: Practical Manual on the Role of UN Human Rights Mechanisms in Monitoring the SDGs that Seek to Realize Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

published on July 2020

Christophe Golay

Read more