Society for Democratic Rights, New Delhi is collaborating with O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, Georgetown University, Washington D.C. to expand the COVID-19 Law Lab database.
The COVID-19 Law Lab is a database of laws that countries have implemented in response to the pandemic. It includes state of emergency declarations, quarantine measures, disease surveillance, legal measures relating to mask-wearing, social distancing, and access to medication and vaccines, and will be expanded to include analysis, toolkit and other support materials for decision and policymakers. The Lab is a joint project of the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and Georgetown University. The COVID-19 Law Lab provides an open-access database that governments, international organizations, practitioners, researchers, policymakers, civil society, and others can use to better understand and evaluate the COVID-19-related legal and policy environment within and across countries.
The text of laws and policies are categorized and tagged in using a ‘direct content analysis’ approach. There are 7 key areas of laws and policies on the COVID Law Lab: State of Emergencies (including national emergency committees), Movement Restrictions, Isolation and Quarantine Measures (including lockdowns, curfew, mask laws), Disease Surveillance and Technology (including contact tracing, mandatory testing upon country arrival), Access to Medicines and Intellectual Property (specifically related to COVID: drugs, testing, vaccines), HIV and COVID-19, and Vaccines. There are over 33 tags used on the database, including administrative penalties, criminal penalties, human rights, misinformation, intellectual properties, international travel/borders, surveillance apps/softwares, non-discrimination, medicines and access, judicial oversight, and extraordinary powers.
As a contributor to the Law Lab, the Society for Democratic Rights is focusing its efforts on the laws and policies, available in the public domain, invoked by countries in the South and South-East Asia region in response to COVID-19. SDR has contributed over 1600 legal and policy documents, across 13 countries in the region.
Project lead: Kashish Aneja
Interns: Astha Madan Grover, Nalinaksha Singh, Nishtha Arora, Preeti Shaw, and Preetkiran Kaur
The Society for Democratic Rights has developed four country reports summarizing the range of measures taken by the country in response to the COVID-19 outbreak that can be sourced to a law or policy. These reports are published on the COVID Law Lab: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Indonesia.