Rebecca Schleifer, JD/MPH, is a globally respected advocate, researcher and scholar working in the field of health and human rights. Over the last ten years, her work at Human Rights Watch helped define the contours of this emerging field, particularly with regard to establishing core research methods, identifying and helping to set the scope of applicable standards, and opening up new sites for action and policy change in national and international settings.
Her expertise encompasses human rights aspects of drug control policies, disability, and HIV and AIDS, with particular attention to girls and women, sex workers, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender men and women, people who use drugs, and other marginalized high risk groups. She has worked in collaboration with members of these communities in Eastern Europe, South Africa, SE Asia, the Caribbean and North and South American settings to research, write and publicize reports on these issues.
Ms. Schleifer has also taught at the university level in the US (Barnard/Columbia University) and Colombia (University of Los Andes Faculty of Law), and written articles on law, health and human rights. Her most recent publications cover the right to health in prison; the use of condoms as evidence of prostitution in the U.S.; and compulsory drug detention in China and South East Asia.