Submission to CERD's Draft General Recommendation n° 36 on preventing and combating racial profiling.

During its 98th session, from 23 April to 10 May 2019, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) initiated the drafting process of general recommendation n° 36 on preventing and combatting racial profiling.

As part of this process, CERD invited stakeholders,  including States, UN and regional human rights mechanisms, UN organisations or  specialised agencies, National Human Rights Institutions, Non-Governmental  Organisations (NGOs), research institutions, and academics to send their  comments.

Privacy International sent its comments to the Committee as part of this process aiming at providing a few suggestions that may help clarifying the terminology used in the Draft General Recommendation 36 and also to inform the Committee’s future contributions.

Privacy International recommends the Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination to consider the following, with regard to the Draft General Recommendation 36:

  • To address the separate implications of the use of AI technologies for different law enforcement purposes;
  • To consider examining the impact of practices similar to racial profiling beyond law enforcement;
  • To clarify the use of different terms invoked in the general recommendation and distinguish between general technologies, methods of treating data and making decisions, and specific technologies;
  • To further reflect on the significant risks for racial discrimination in the use of predictive policing and facial recognition technologies.