Colombia

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The International Network on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net), the Centre for Law, Justice and Society (Dejusticia) and the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights (NCHR) organized the first Latin America Strategic Workshop on Enforcement of Positive Decisions on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Bogota (Colombia) on February 7-8, 2013, bringing together 20 lawyers and activists from across the region. The workshop was supported by the Ford Foundation and the University of Los Andes.

The plaintiff filed an injunction aimed at guaranteeing the right of a 12 year-old girl to her mental health, among other rights. The girl became pregnant in early 2011 and started presenting symptoms of anxiety and depression, as diagnosed by different physicians, who recommended the interruption of her pregnancy.

The mother of an intellectually disabled girl initiated a tutela action because her daughter had been diagnosed with cognitive deficit and microcephaly, and she could not afford the recommended integrated program of therapy and special education. The Constitutional Court accepted to review the case and ordered EPS Coomeva to coordinate with local education agencies to obtain a comprehensive medical assessment of the minor, as well as to determine the medical and educational services required for her disability.

Complainant is hearing impaired and had completed the first semester in the Primary School Teacher's College at Montería, but was not able to continue on past the first year because based on the applicable law (paragraph 3, Art 9 of Decree 366/2009) established that a minimum presence of 10 students with hearing disabilities was necessary to require sign language interpreters in educational institutions.

The plaintiffs filed a constitutional claim arguing that Law 115 of 1994 did not comply with international human rights standards by allowing for the option to charge fees on primary education (sect. 183). The Court found the law unenforceable, considering that fees may not be applied to official primary education, but only to secondary and higher education levels.

In September 2006, seven hooded and armed men kidnapped Rosmira Serrano Quintero's partner and killed her father, then told her to leave El Limoncito, where she lived, or else she and her daughters would also be killed, so she fled. In November 2006, she requested registration of herself and her daughters as displaced persons. Her application was denied by the Presidential Agency for Social Action and International Cooperation (Social Action). Ms.

ESCR-Net expresses its solidarity with the indigenous populations of Toribio and Jambalo in Cauca, Colombia, who are pacifists in the ongoing war against the guerilla forces.  ESCR-Net asks that attacks and confrontations cease in the urban areas of Toribio and other places with peaceful, indigenous populations.

The Colombian Constitutional Court has among its functions the review of tutela actions. The Court annually reviews a small proportion of the more than 300,000 tutela actions resolved by lower judges; 36% of which are related to the right to health according to data of the Colombian Ombudsman's Office for 2005. Decision T-760 of 2008 accumulated 22 of these cases. However, the Court did not limit itself to reviewing and resolving these individual cases.

Country: 
Colombia
Working Group(s) / Area(s) of Work: 
Corporate Accountability
Strategic Litigation
OP-ICESCR