Today’s global pandemic is stretching the capacity of democracies across the world. In these difficult times, international solidarity and continued cooperation among governments, civil society, private sector and academia are more necessary than ever.
Working with its Member States and civil society partners, the Community of Democracies is looking across the world, to every region, for how democracy is responding to Covid-19.
As we are approaching the 20th anniversary of the Community of Democracies and its founding document the Warsaw Declaration (June 27, 2020), Secretary General Thomas E. Garrett recently highlighted that democracies must respond to current pandemic through renewed adherence to the 19 principles of the Warsaw Declaration. ‘I believe this global crisis will allow democracy, with its openness and accountability, to show it is the political system best suited to protect citizens’ health, while ensuring protection of the rule of law, human rights and fundamental freedoms’– he said.
Below is a short summary of most recent CoD activities regarding democracy and COVID-19 pandemic.
Democratic Resiliency in Times of World Crisis
During a webinar discussion, together with Secretary General Kevin Casas-Zamora of International IDEA and Secretary General Luis Almagro of Organization of American States, SG Thomas E. Garrett shared his views on democratic resiliency in times of world crisis, highlighting that while we work and sacrifice to stay healthy and keep our communities safe, we can’t lose sight of the risk to human rights and freedoms. WATCH WEBINAR
Supporting Democratic Resilience in the Americas
Speaking in a special session of the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States on “Supporting Democracy Resiliency in the Americas: Challenges and Best Practices”, SG Thomas E. Garrett underlined that one of key means to effectively address and respond to the pandemic-related challenges will be upholding the democratic norms and principles of the CoD Warsaw Declaration and the Inter American Democratic Charter, which both provide road map to democratic values and fundamental freedoms. READ FULL REMARKS
Public Access to Information in Times of Global Pandemic
The right of the press to collect and disseminate information is one of the core principles of the Community’s Warsaw Declaration. In his statement on World Press Freedom Day (May 3, 2020), SG Thomas E. Garrett underlined that democracy is the political system best-suited to address and tackle this pandemic, in providing government transparency and access to information, media freedoms, and enabling citizens to have a voice, providing a space for exchange of views and ideas to contribute to decision making processes.
FULL STATEMENT BY SG THOMAS E. GARRETT