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Supporting NHRI leadership during COVID

Graphic: Participants of the leadership outreach call with SUHAKAM

The Leadership Solidarity Outreach program aims to support APF members to navigate the challenges presented by COVID-19.

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The APF secretariat has held separate virtual talks with leaders of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) and the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (SLHRC) as part of its Leadership Solidarity Outreach program. 

The aim of the Leadership Solidarity Outreach program is to support APF members as they continue to navigate the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

During the virtual session with SUHAKAM, held on 23 June, the Commission’s leaders highlighted the challenge of effectively undertaking detention monitoring during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In response, the APF agreed to co-host a virtual dialogue, in partnership with SUHAKAM and other member institutions, to share the experiences of various NHRIs carrying out detention monitoring during the pandemic. The APF Dialogue: Exchanges on NHRIs in the Monitoring of Detention Centres during COVID-19 subsequently took place on 8 July.

SUHAKAM’s leaders also stressed the need for further discussions on how to support Commissioners to respond to sensitive human rights issues in the country, such as the protection of transgender rights. Other key topics covered included GANHRI accreditation advice and the use of the APF’s Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning guide to support the Commission’s work. 

The virtual session with the SLHRC was held on 6 July and focused on discussions on capacity development for NHRI staff, and the sharing of best practices around COVID-19 responses. The SLHRC were also invited to take in the APF dialogue on detention monitoring during COVID-19. 

The Leadership Solidarity Outreach program provides an opportunity for leaders of member institutions to discuss their current work and priorities and are a valuable way of maintaining institutional and personal relationships while travel between countries is not possible.

The program will continue while COVID-19 travel restrictions remain in place.

If you are interested in scheduling a call with the APF secretariat, please contact Pip Dargan, Principal Adviser, Capacity Assessment and International Engagement at pipdargan@asiapacificforum.net

Date: 30 July 2021