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Brazil: UN expert on leprosy to visit

The UN Special Rapporteur on the elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy (Hansen’s disease) and their family members will make her first official visit to Brazil from 7 to 14 May.

“I am eager to learn about measures the central and local authorities are taking to protect and promote human rights of those affected by Hansen’s disease, and their family members,” said Alice Cruz. “I also intend to identify challenges and gaps in elimination of discrimination and make recommendations.”

“My visit will focus primarily on the issues of structural and interpersonal discrimination, anti-discriminatory policies, and the best strategies to reduce the stigma of the disease and foster inclusive development for people affected.”

The Special Rapporteur will meet federal and local Government representatives, civil society organisations, leprosy experts, as well as people affected, their family members and their representative organisations. She will visit Hansen’s disease communities to discuss their priorities and concerns.

Cruz will hold a press conference on 14 May to share her preliminary observations. It will begin at 11:30 am local time at the Pan American Health Organisation conference room, Lote 19 - Avenida das Nações, SEN, in Brasilia. Access to the press conference will be limited to journalists.

The Special Rapporteur will submit a comprehensive report to the UN Human Rights Council in June 2020.

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