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Failure to Protect Older People, People with Disabilities in British Columbia

(Ottawa) – Inadequate government support compounded risks for people with disabilities and older people during the recent extreme and foreseeable heatwave that killed hundreds of people in the Canadian province of British Columbia (BC), Human Rights…
A woman sits to take a rest as heat wave hits Western Canada on June 30, 2021 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. © 2021 Mert Alper Dervis/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
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Enforced Disappearances, Incommunicado Detention, Groundless Deportation

(Beirut) – United Arab Emirates authorities have forcibly disappeared at least four Pakistani men since October 2020 and deported at least six others without explanation, apparently based solely on their religious background, Human Rights Watch said…
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Examples of In-Person Education in Pandemic Offer Lessons for All

(Bolzano) – The measures some schools in Italy took to ensure access to quality education for students with disabilities during Covid-19-related school closures should inspire other schools to follow suit, Human Rights Watch said today. The steps…
Teacher supports three students sitting in an otherwise empty classroom, all wearing face masks.
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Pandemic Exposes Need for Improvements in Staffing, Oversight, Accountability

(New York) – Potential neglect and prolonged isolation may have caused serious harm to many people in nursing homes in the United States during the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch said today.  Human Rights Watch interviews with more…
A nursing home resident holds his wife’s hand.
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Neglect by Hamas Authorities, Armed Conflict Cause Further Hardship

(Gaza) – Israel’s 13-year closure of the Gaza Strip along with neglect by Hamas authorities, significantly encumber the day-to-day life of tens of thousands of Palestinians with disabilities, Human Rights Watch said today on the International Day of…
Deema Salha, an 11-year-old girl with cerebral palsy and an intellectual disability, in the yard of her home in the Gaza Strip. Deema uses a nebulizer when she has trouble breathing, which she cannot operate without electricity, putting her health at risk.
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New Human Rights Watch Campaign Against Whitewashing Rights Violations

(Beirut) – The Saudi government has spent billions of dollars hosting major entertainment, cultural, and sporting events as a deliberate strategy to deflect from the country’s image as a pervasive human rights violator, Human Rights Watch said today.…
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3 Years into Violence, More Protection, Support Needed

(Nairobi) – Concrete action is needed to make the humanitarian response to the crisis in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon more inclusive of people with disabilities, Human Rights Watch said today on International Human Rights Day. In…
Blind people hold white canes they received from a local organization working with people with disabilities in Buea, South-West region, December 3, 2019.
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Ban Chaining; Provide Mental Health Services

  (Abuja, November 11, 2019) – Thousands of people with mental health conditions across Nigeria are chained and locked up in various facilities where they face terrible abuse, Human Rights Watch said today. Detention, chaining, and…
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Government, Donors Should Expand Mental Health Programs

(Amsterdam) – The Afghan government is failing to provide sufficient psychosocial, or mental health, support to Afghans who have experienced traumatic events, Human Rights Watch said today. More than half the…
A man sits in the yard at a mental health facility in the city of Herat, April 2014. © 2014 Aref Karimi/AFP/Getty Images
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Trafficking, Exploitation, Torture, Abusive Prison Conditions

(Addis Ababa) – Ethiopians undertaking the perilous journey by boat across the Red Sea or Gulf of Aden face exploitation and torture in Yemen by a network of trafficking groups, Human Rights Watch said today. They also encounter abusive prison…
African migrants receive food and water inside a football stadium in the Red Sea port city of Aden in Yemen, on April 23, 2019. © AFP/Getty Images
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Funds Needed to Scale Up Humanitarian Response

(Nairobi) – People with disabilities in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon are caught in the violence and struggle to flee to safety when their communities come under attack. They also face difficulties in getting necessary assistance…
Staff from the Coordinating Unit, a network supporting people with people with disabilities in the South-West region of Cameroon, April 2019.
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End Institutionalization, Provide Community-Based Support

    (Berlin) – Children with disabilities in state institutions in Kazakhstan are at risk of physical violence, forced sedation, and neglect, Human Rights Watch said today. Kazakhstan should make it a priority to move children…
Sixteen beds fill a room with barred windows in a closed institution for children with disabilities.
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Why has Human Rights Watch dedicated 10 years to this subject? We really believe that all kids everywhere are entitled to go to school and that they should feel safe in their schools wherever in the world they might be. We also feel that in…
Once soldiers make classrooms their home, the school can become a military target
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All Children Should Have Access to School

Why did you focus on Kazakhstan for this report? The Kazakh government has committed to improving education opportunities for children with disabilities, but so far we haven’t seen that commitment lead to meaningful change. We wanted to better…
First grade math class in a mainstream inclusive school in Almaty, Kazakhstan, includes at least one child with disabilities.
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End Institutionalization, Support Independent Living

(Moscow) – Russian orphanages where children with disabilities grow up often transfer them to closed state institutions for adults when they reach 18 without their consent, Human Rights Watch said today. Those who do move into the community often…
A young man does yard work on the grounds of a closed state institution for adults with disabilities.
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Oversight Crucial to End Abuse of People with Disabilities

(Jakarta) – The Indonesian government has taken important steps to end the practice of shackling people with mental health conditions, Human Rights Watch said today. But many people remain locked up in institutions instead of being able to live in…
A woman with a scarf sits on a wooden platform to which she is shackled.
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Segregation, Lack of Accessibility for Children with Disabilities

(Brussels) – Children with disabilities in Nepal face serious obstacles to quality, inclusive education, Human Rights Watch said today. Despite progress in law and policy, the government segregates most children with disabilities into…
A sign language teacher translates a lesson to students with disabilities in an inclusive class.
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Could Amount to War Crimes

(New York) – Israel has repeatedly denied Palestinians permits to build schools in the West Bank and demolished schools built without permits, making it more difficult or impossible for thousands of children to get an education. On…
Palestinian Bedouin school children walk towards their tents on September 15, 2010 at their Bedouin camp outside the Israeli West Bank settlement of Ma'ale Adumin. Israel does not recognize the Bedouins’ property claims and has demolished homes and school
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Daunting Civil Registration Process Depresses Enrollment

(Tunis) – Mauritania’s national civil registration process is preventing some children from attending public school and taking mandatory national examinations, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should change its policies to…
Three of Mariama’s ten children: Khadijetou, Asya and Aicha who recently enrolled in primary school despite their lack of civil registration, thanks to the assistance of the Mauritanian NGO Women Heads of Family, Nouakchott, Mauritania, October 23, 2017.
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Prisoners with Disabilities Serving Time in Solitary, Face Physical, Sexual Abuse

How is it that 50 percent of Australia’s prison population has a disability? Eighteen percent of Australia’s general population has a disability. The most common type of disabilities found in prisons are mental health conditions. People with…
A prisoner lies in his solitary confinement cell in the safety unit at Lotus Glen Correctional Centre, northern Queensland.