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Special temporary measures and the norm of equality

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Temporary laws or measures arise in different circumstances to deal with a wide array of perceived problems or concerns. This essay deals with one specific kind of temporary measures, which are provided for in international human rights treaties: 'preferential treatments' or 'positive measures', as they are called. The essay examines whether these measures undermine the predictability and stability of the norm of equality on which behalf they are said to have been adopted. The essay argues that these measures will be inconsistent with and destablise equality only if equality is understood narrowly as a principle that only requires sameness of treatment rather than the more substantive notion of equality (equality of opportunity) that this essay endorses and advances.




Addis, A. (2015). Special temporary measures and the norm of equality. Netherlands Yearbook of International Law, 45, 311–330.

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