Earlier this week, Public Knowledge joined 91 civil society groups in a letter to the United Nations’ Human Rights Council requesting they establish a new Special Rapporteur focused on the right to privacy. This Special Rapporteur would investigate infringements upon the right to privacy as an independent agent, examining potential human rights violations on a global scale as part of a dedicated mandate. The Association of Progressive Communications delivered the letter.
The letter was delivered during the current Human Rights Council session, which is meeting in Geneva from March 2-27. At this meeting, the HRC will consider several internet-related issues and may decide to create this new Special Rapporteur position. The creation of this new position is part of a series of actions that have been developing at the United Nations in response to the global public outrage over governmental surveillance of digital communications.
The letter signatories believe that a dedicated mandate for a Special Rapporteur would help develop common understandings on the right to privacy, monitor and report on its implementation and provide authoritative guidance to both states and non-state actors, especially businesses, in an effort to strengthen privacy rights worldwide.
The following can be attributed to Carolina Rossini, Vice President of International Policy at Public Knowledge:
“We should not just lose the right to privacy because our communications have transitioned to new formats. This is why Public Knowledge is pleased to join these public interest groups in protecting privacy in the digital age.”
Members of the media may contact Communications Director Shiva Stella with inquiries, interview requests, or to join the Public Knowledge press list at firstname.lastname@example.org or 405-249-9435.