UN: UN human rights expert calls for reliable data to combat racism, discrimination

New York, US (PANA) - UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial
discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, Mr. Mutuma Ruteere has said governments need to improve data collection as a means to better assess the situation of vulnerable groups.

"The right to be free from discrimination includes the right to access information that could serve as evidence to prove discrimination," Ruteere noted  Wednesday after presenting his report to the UN General Assembly. "The lack of disaggregated data has led to a serious information gap that limits the effective identification of population groups that are suffering discrimination."

He stated: "It also hinders adequate policy-making at the national, regional and
international levels and promotes impunity, although there is no
clearly stated international obligation to collect ethnic data, the human rights legal
framework provides a strong mandate to gather this kind of data."

According to Ruteere, the right to be free from discrimination includes the right to access
information that could serve as evidence to prove discrimination.

The human rights expert acknowledged the fears and anxieties expressed by
some states and vulnerable groups regarding the collection of sensitive data,
but he said that these concerns could be overcome if strict human rights rules
were observed.

This includes the right to privacy, the protection of data, the establishment of
participatory processes based on informed consent as well as the self-identification
of respondents.

"The collection of data disaggregated by ethnicity on economic, social,
cultural, civil and political indicators is a pre-requisite if we are to identify
patterns of discrimination and existing gaps," Mr. Ruteere said.

"Through better data collection, discriminated groups will become more
visible and get better protection."

He noted that equality is at the heart of the newly adopted sustainable
development agenda which, under Goal 17, calls for the collection of
disaggregated data to measure progress while leaving no one behind to
promote and foster non-discrimination while upholding the universality
of human rights.

"At a time when the international community is discussing how to measure
progress on the new agenda, the adoption of indicators capturing levels of
discrimination will demonstrate States’ commitment," the UN expert said.

The UN Human Rights Council in November 2011 appointed Mr. Ruteere as
Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination,
xenophobia and related intolerance.
-0-  PANA   AA/AR  4Nov2015

04 Novembro 2015 15:48:19




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