Racial discrimination

Published on March 11, 2024
As noted in the report, military spending by Global North states reflects their priorities and disregard for basic human rights - and we remind states in the Global North that their military aid and arms exports currently contribute to the genocide of the Palestinian people in Gaza, in violation of the current ICJ provisional measures order.
Uploaded on December 11, 2023
The 44th session of the Universal Periodic was held from 6 to 17 November 2023. 14 Countries were under review during the session: Turkmenistan, Cabo Verde, Uzbekistan, Germany, Canada, Burkina Faso, Colombia, Tuvalu, Djibouti, Bangladesh, Azerbaijan, Cuba, the Russian Federation and Cameroon. In collaboration with our partners, the SRI submitted reports for Canada, Bangladesh and Azerbaijan.
Published on September 28, 2023
We urge Canada to honour its treaty obligations, fully implement the calls to action set out in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the calls to justice in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s National Inquiry, and to guarantee in law and practice the rights set forth in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Published on September 21, 2023
Until all neocolonial and occupying states and forces are withdrawn, until transnational corporations and foreign military bases and operations are expelled, until extractivist industries are stopped, until debt is cancelled and the international economic order reframed to put people before profit, people living under occupation and those who bear the brunt of neocolonialism as well as their allies will continue to fight to be free.
Uploaded on August 28, 2023
The suggested changes to the Draft General Recommendation proposed in this document are based on the joint submission, and focuses on the impact of systemic racism on global health systems, and consequent impact on people.
Published on July 10, 2023

The relationship between health, race, caste, class and gender is rooted in colonial, patriarchal and capitalist control over women’s sexuality, reproduction and bodies and produces distinct experiences of oppression that are often fatal. Racialised women are specifically targeted by harmful stereotypes, the essentialisation of women to their reproductive capacities, forced sterilisation, forced pregnancies and chromosomal testing in sporting events through state interventions or purposeful inaction. This has profound impacts on their health and human rights.

Published on July 07, 2023
We regret Switzerland’s inconsistent approach to recommendations received on addressing racism and racial discrimination. We remain concerned by structural racism in Switzerland, and its varied manifestations as illustrated through barriers to accessing affordable health services or housing, through restrictive immigration rules and related border harassment, or through a lack of accountability for racial profiling, police harassment, brutality, and murder- as recently exemplified through the acquittal of the police officers who murdered Mike Ben Peter.
Uploaded on July 04, 2023

Prepared in response to the call for inputs issued by the Special Rapporteur on the right to development to inform his 2023 thematic reports and priorities for the mandate, this submission recommends adopting an intersectional approach to the right to development by engaging with gender, racial and economic justice, among others.

Uploaded on May 15, 2023

This joint submission by SRI, AWID and IWRAW AP responds to a call for input issued by the Independent Expert on foreign debt for her upcoming report on multiple crises, fiscal systems and human rights. The submission aims to address the current situation as a crisis of neo-liberal capitalism, white supremacy, colonialism and patriarchy, and calls for an intersectional approach to these crises, their causes and their human rights impacts.

Uploaded on April 21, 2023

Summary of the submission to the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) to inform the elaboration of General Recommendation no 37 on racial discrimination and the right to health

Submitted by: Sexual Rights Initiative (SRI), National Council of Women Leaders (NCWL), Dalit Human Rights Defenders Network (DHRDNet), International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN), The Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), Her Rights Initiative (HRI), and Alisa Lombard

Uploaded on April 20, 2023

In response to the Special Rapporteur’s call for input about unilateral coercive measures and the right to health, SRI made a submission examining unilateral sanctions ​​as forms of economic and racial injustice and imperial domination, and a violation of the right to development.

Published on February 14, 2023

As we embark on another year of activism for sexual rights, we wanted to share with you our highlights of 2022. While the UN human rights system continues to be confronted by multiple challenges –from funding shortages, geopolitical tensions and polarisation and attempts to undermine multilateralism to the presence and influence of regressive and conservative actors, we have made steadfast progress in advancing sexual rights in this system. Read below for our highlights of 2022.

Uploaded on November 14, 2022

SRI, IWRAW Asia Pacific and AWID made a joint submission in response to the Working Group’s call for inputs on “Human security of women and girls in the context of poverty and inequality.” The submission advocates for an economic justice approach and class analysis of poverty and inequality.

Uploaded on August 23, 2022
The main argument of this submission is that a tripartite approach is necessary in order for states to meet their obligations under CERD Article 5 (e)(iv) concerning access to health and healthcare of all people.
Uploaded on December 11, 2023

This report examines gaps in Canada’s obligation to respect, protect, and fulfil the right to abortion. Abortion is a decriminalized healthcare procedure and is enshrined in numerous human rights instruments and ratified conventions. Despite this, many people in Canada face barriers when seeking abortion services and some are ultimately unable to access care.

Published on August 23, 2022
We thank the committee for the opportunity to provide our inputs. We are however concerned by the barriers to participation for civil society organisations, particularly but not limited to those from the Global South, in today’s discussions due to visa restrictions and high costs of travel to Geneva, and that only part of today’s proceedings are in a hybrid format. We urge the committee to expand the opportunities for consultation and engagement in this critical process, including by hosting regional meetings in order to ensure meaningful participation from organisations from the Global South and the people most affected by racial discrimination.
Published on August 23, 2022
A tripartite approach is necessary in order for states to meet their obligations under CERD Article 5 (e)(iv) concerning access to health and healthcare of all people. First, states must ensure that healthcare is publicly funded through progressive taxation; second, states must adopt a systems approach to fulfil the right to health; and, third, states must take an intersectional approach in all aspects of healthcare provision.
Uploaded on August 08, 2022

In response to the Special Rapporteur’s call for inputs on racism and the right to health, SRI made a submission advocating for an analysis of racism and the right to health addressing both racism and colonialism as determinants of health and as structural violence.

Uploaded on April 14, 2022

In response to the Special Rapporteur’s call for inputs on violence and its impact on the right to health, SRI made a submission addressing violations of bodily autonomy and the operation of systems of oppression as structural violence

Uploaded on October 08, 2021

This is the moment to radically reimagine our systems and institutions so that they serve the people. The pandemic has shown that when states choose to, they can act swiftly to implement policies and spend resources that would have been unthinkable two years ago.  At the Human Rights Council, we must recognize this moment for what it is -a chance to breathe new and transformative life into the human rights system and everything that it is supposed to stand for.

Uploaded on October 08, 2021

Transitional justice mechanisms must respond to historic causes of violence and conflict by addressing structural oppressions that affect people based on their race, class, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, amongst others. Redress comes only when acknowledging how intersectional oppression continues to operate through associated stereotypes, stigma and discrimination, including those related to race, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression.  Intersectionality is crucial to ensure a truth and reconciliation process.

Published on August 31, 2018

The 39th session of the UN Human Rights Council will take place from September 10-28, 2018. Find below information about anticipated sexual rights-related resolutions, panels and reports, UPR outcomes, and parallel events taking place during the 39th session.

Expected Resolutions Relevant to Sexual Rights

Published on July 09, 2018

The 38th session of the UN Human Rights Council took place from June 18 to July 6, 2018. Below you will find information on some of the key sexual rights related resolutions, oral statements and annual discussions. All of which the Sexual Rights Initiative (SRI) was engaged with during the session.


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Uploaded on July 01, 2018

In response to the Special Rapporteur’s call for input on nationalist populism, the submission makes the links between the resurgence of white supremacist, racist and xenophobic discourse in mainstream, right-wing and populist movements, related discriminatory laws and policies, and States’ complicity in furthering violence. It looks at the impact of racial discrimination in the area of sexuality and gender, and advocates for an intersectional approach to these issues.