17 August 2018 · United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commisioner

Political leaders must stop misusing leprosy as a metaphor for harmful stereotypes, says UN expert

Politicians must stop misusing the word leprosy to convey harmful stereotypes because its widespread use as a metaphor for all that is loathsome contributes to violations of the human rights of persons affected by leprosy, says a UN expert.

“Within the past two months we have witnessed several such incidents, and just recently there have been two discriminatory remarks by high-level political leaders,” said Alice Cruz, the UN Special Rapporteur on the elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members.

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