2019 OHCHR Annual report on human rights and HIV
Analysis of precedential value
This report was authored by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, who reports directly to the UN Secretary-General–head of the UN system–and leads the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), a body within the UN Secretariat. High Commissioners are human rights experts with mandates to report and advise on human rights from a thematic or country-specific perspective. The sitting High Commissioner for Human Rights at the time of this report’s release was Michelle Bachelet (Chile).
This report was submitted to the Human Rights Council, which is composed of elected representatives from 47 Member States; together, they are responsible for coordinating investigations of and responses to human rights violations.
Used as precedent
human rights, key and vulnerable populations, structural barriers
“States should remove structural barriers, including discriminatory laws and policies, and apply human rights-based approaches to the response to HIV, putting people living with HIV at the centre of their policies, programmes and practices. In order not to leave anyone behind, States should increase their efforts to reach the most marginalized women and adolescents, key populations vulnerable to HIV, including gay men and other men who have sex with men, sex workers, people who use drugs, transgender people, and persons in prisons and other closed settings. Communities should be involved in the design, implementation and delivery of policies, programmes and practices.” (paragraph 47(a))
human rights, positive legal determinants
“States should review their laws in accordance with international human rights law. In order to improve the human rights aspect in the response to HIV, States and their parliaments could collaborate at the regional and subregional levels to develop human rights-based normative content to inspire the domestication of laws at the national level. In order to reach Sustainable Development Goal target 3.3 and to leave no one behind, States should adopt legislation, policies and practices that decriminalize sex work, drug use, same-sex relations, and gender identity and expression, and provide access to gender recognition.” (paragraph 47(b))
“National human rights institutions and civil society have an important role to play in strengthening human rights accountability. The shrinking space for civil society is a key driver in leaving behind people living with HIV, particularly key populations. States should respect, protect and promote civil society space, provide an enabling regulatory and funding environment that allows civil society to work at the national, regional and subregional levels, and repeal laws that create barriers to the activities of civil society bodies. Civil society should be empowered to collect data, address human rights violations, participate in policymaking and decision-making, implementation and monitoring, including on issues relating to HIV and the rights of people living with HIV. In order to improve its effectiveness, civil society could cooperate at the regional level on joint advocacy efforts, including with regional mechanisms.” (paragraph 47(b))
negative legal determinants, stigma and discrimination
“States should review and adopt legislation, programmes and policies to combat stigma and discrimination, violence and abuse against people living with or at risk of HIV, with particular attention to key populations. States should work with United Nations agencies, civil society, communities and key populations to invest in programmes, education and other actions to eliminate HIV-related stigma and discrimination in all areas of life, including through the Global Partnership for Action to Eliminate All Forms of HIV-related Stigma and Discrimination. Regional and subregional networks have an important role to play in raising awareness and eliminating stigma and discrimination.” (paragraph 47(g))
human rights, universal health coverage
“States should ensure that universal health coverage promotes both the health and rights of all persons, including the most marginalized, such as people living with HIV and key populations, and addresses human rights barriers to health. States should ensure that human rights, including the right to health of persons living with HIV, are integrated into discussions on universal health coverage, including in the lead-up to the high-level meeting of the General Assembly on universal health coverage and in its outcome document.” (paragraph 47(h))