Brazil has not addressed longstanding human rights problems that allowed the Zika outbreak to escalate, leaving the population vulnerable to future outbreaks and other serious public health risks. The government declared an end to the national public health emergency related to the Zika virus in May 2017, but the Zika threat in Brazil remains. The outbreak hit as the country faced its worst economic recession in decades, forcing authorities to make difficult decisions about allocating resources. But even in earlier times of economic growth, government investments in water and sanitation infrastructure were inadequate. Years of neglect contributed to the water and wastewater conditions that allowed the proliferation of the Aedes mosquito and the rapid spread of the virus, Human Rights Watch found.
July 12, 2017News Release