VOL.4 MARCH 2022 - TOWARD AN ECOSYSTEM APPROACH: - COVID-19, Canada-Asia Pacific Relations, and
9 March 2022
The Limits of Global International Organizations During the COVID-19 Pandemic Global international organizations have been roundly criticized for their sluggishness and lack of action in response to the pandemic.2 The World Health Organization’s hesitance in declaring COVID-19 a pandemic and its lack of power to enforce the principles and rules 13 underlying the global health system have renewed c. [...] Yet, under the “politics of crisis” that unfolded as the pandemic grew, international organizations in the region had the urgent impetus to expand their work to include pandemic and health-related programs and responses.23 The disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic along lines of race, socioeconomic status, age, Indigeneity, gender, and other axes of difference, in Canada and beyond, als. [...] The threat to defund and terminate ties with the organization dealt a critical blow to the WHO’s credibility and ability to respond to the pandemic.43 While the virus spread from Wuhan around the world, reliance on the WHO’s Geneva Secretariat’s international presence and influence may have slowed and confused the responses of multiple countries, including Canada. [...] On June 17, 2020, the Ministerial Action Group met for the first time and identified protocols that would prioritize the deployment of technical personnel, the transport of medical and humanitarian supplies, the repatriation of PIF state nationals, and the maintenance of biosecurity.49 In August, the Pacific Humanitarian Team (PHT), helmed by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affa. [...] The APF/ACSC’s annual meetings, usually coinciding with the major ASEAN summits, have been a channel for the participation of civil society and marginalized peoples in ASEAN and have helped widen the space for democratic engagement and transnational exchange in the regional body.111 In November 2020, the APF/ACSC hosted almost 1,200 delegates virtually and in Hanoi, Vietnam, to discuss the COVID-1.