CLAIHR Letter to PM Trudeau: Support the waiver on IP rights on COVID vaccines

While developed nations gradually bring the COVID-19 crisis under control through vaccinations, it continues to take a destructive toll on the Global South. Of the one billion COVID-19 vaccines administered globally, only 0.2% were administered to low-income countries. This is a product of global inequity and it can be addressed through decisive action. CLAIHR wrote to Prime Minister Trudeau and Karina Gould, Minister of International Development, calling on Canada to take a stand at the World Trade Organization in support of developing nations’ right to produce affordable generic COVID-19 vaccines. The intellectual property rights protected by the WTO provide pharmaceutical companies with a monopoly over the production of vaccines and medical supplies, which restricts access to life-saving medications for billions across the globe. While many nations have spoken out against these restrictive trade rules in the context of a global pandemic, Canada’s government has offered only non-committal generalities with no firm commitments. A global pandemic is not the time for token statements. CLAIHR is calling on Canada to take a stand to protect the right to human health, which is protected in international law. Read CLAIHR’s letter to Prime Minister Trudeau and Karina Gould, calling on the Canadian government to support a petition to the World Trade Organization (WTO) to waive intellectual property rights and patent laws on all COVID-19 vaccines and treatments until global herd immunity is achieved.