Title: Resilience in Times of Need: Educational and Social Measures Adopted by the Regional Labour Court of Goiás During the Pandemic
Stream: Other Humanities
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation
Carolina Piva, Federal University of Goiás; Regional Labour Court of Goiás, Brazil
Quarantine, lockdown, social distancing and facemask policies are measures that have been taken worldwide to reduce Covid-19 transmission. In Brazil, while the Executive administration has downplayed the threat of coronavirus infection, the response of Judiciary to Covid-19 crisis occurred immediately after the confirmation of the first cases. Different courts implemented a set of institutional arrangements to mitigate the impact of the pandemic within Brazilian society. By ensuring the constitutional right to health and social protection, one of the crucial decisions of the Brazilian Judiciary was also to interfere with the government’s anti-scientific stance on vaccines. Apart from this essential role mostly played by higher courts, the Regional Labour Court of Goiás (TRT18), located in Central Brazil, has also specifically invested in social solidarity actions towards local communities (i.e. expanding the scope of pre-procedural mediation for conflicts between employees and employers, allocating millions of pounds for Covid-19 care and distributing basic-needs grocery packages to unprivileged families). In addition, TRT18 has developed educational initiatives, via remote learning, by offering training in health care and teleworking. My paper presents these actions to the international audience evincing the ‘additional gains’ achieved by this specialised Court as part of its policies aimed at fostering institutional resilience in a context of health emergency. From this perspective, I examine the judicial activism these actions represent not as a practice by judges of disallowing policy choices by governmental officials, but as a substantial support measure to overcome social inequalities and attenuate structural problems intensified by the pandemic.
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