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30th July 2020, 15:08:43 UTC

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare workers who have blown the whistle and spoke up in Russia are now reporting reprisals by the authorities for raising concerns over shortage of necessary equipment, lack of training, low pay or unsafe working conditions.

Doctor Tatyana Revva, from the intensive care unit in Kalach-on-Don and a whistle-blower, is facing formal reprimand and potential dismissal after she repeatedly complained to the hospital’s management about the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical workers, as well as other work-related issues.

Similarly, Doctor Yulia Volkova, an endocrinologist from Sochi, has been accused of committing an administrative offense under the Russian “fake news” legislation, for a video she posted on Twitter, calling for health care workers to be provided with PPE.

Tatyana and Yulia are both facing severe penalties simply for exercising their right to freedom of expression and for raising matters of public interest. They should be able to do so without fear of reprisals.

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