During UNHCR’s annual Executive Committee, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, highlighted that maintaining levels of humanitarian aid is a comparatively inexpensive way to save lives and protect refugees and their host communities facing a “pandemic of poverty” resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a key annual address to UNHCR’s annual Executive Committee meeting in Geneva, UNHCR’s Assistant High Commissioner for Protection, Gillian Triggs, warned that COVID-19 is severely testing refugee protection.
In a statement released on 30 September, UNHCR and some 100 NGOs called on global leaders to ensure that refugees are included in social safety nets and support services for COVID-19.
On 29-30 September, UNHCR held it first virtual multilingual global consultations with non-governmental organisations (NGOs), with some 200 participants from international and national NGOs, and refugee-led organizations. The objectives of the consultations were to analyze the collective response and good practices to the challenges and opportunities presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, to develop recommendations for future collaboration between UNHCR and NGOs, and to feed into the process of the 2020 High Commissioner’s Dialogue on Protection Challenges.