Dear Health NOW! activists,
We are less than two weeks away from the official launching of the Health NOW! campaign under the slogan No war, No WTO; Fight for people’s health! on March 20. The campaign will highlight the urgency of ensuring health for all while exposing neoliberal globalization and wars of aggression as today’s two major threats to global people’s health.
The preparations for the campaign’s launching are in full swing and your participation will ensure the success of the launching and the further campaign. Please allow me therefore to suggest you 10 things to add to your “to-do” list:
In the past few weeks we have worked hard to make www.health-now.org a website that can serve as our central campaign instrument. The site has two major sections: “news” and “Health & occupation watch.” The “news” section compiles materials that substantiate our main campaign demands: No war; No WTO and Healthcare, not warfare. “Health & occupation watch” monitors the impact of war, occupation and militarization on health with special attention for Iraq, Palestine and Afghanistan. Apart from these two sections, the website also features the campaign’s signature campaign and many campaign-related pages and resources. Currently, most pages are already available in English but the most important campaign pages will be made available in English, French and Spanish and articles in other languages will be added. Please visit www.health-now.org and send us your feedback and suggestions so we can improve the site’s design and content.
Sign the petition
The Health NOW! signature campaign is integrated in www.health-now.org and can also be accessed at http://petition.health-now.org. Please add your name already and encourage other people to sign so we already have a significant number of signatures when the campaign goes public.
Subscribe to the mailing list
The website gives every visitor the opportunity to subscribe to the Health NOW! mailing list. This list will be used for regular campaign updates after March 20.
Submit articles and materials
A unique feature of www.health-now.org is that anyone is invited to contribute to the campaign website. Contributions can also include one picture that will appear together with the text and other files (more picture files, pdf, etc.). They can be submitted through the form at http://www.health-now.org/site/publish.php? which is also accessible through the site’s navigation menu.
We are especially interested in the following contributions:
Data and reports about the health impact of military occupation and militarization for Health & Occupation Watch.
Reports of Health NOW! campaign activities of your local organization.
Data or reports that illustrate the urgency of the campaign’s major demands: Stop the occupation of Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan. WTO out of health. Health care, not warfare.
Please follow the 7 simple steps to upload your contribution. We are very much interested to hear your experiences with this form: Any technical hick-ups? Can we simplify the instructions? Other recommendations?
Prepare campaign materials
The campaign logos are available for download at the “resources” page of the www.health-now.org (or follow this link: http://www.health-now.org/site/resources.php) in jpg and pdf formats. We also have a text for a general campaign flier available in English, French, Spanish and Dutch that can be adjusted to your own needs. More resources will be uploaded as they come in. Please feel free to use the logos and text to develop your own materials and send us a copy for upload to the site.
Plan a press conference to launch the campaign
The campaign will be launched with a series of press conferences in different countries to symbolize the worldwide opposition to war and globalization and the cry for health NOW! As of now, groups in the Philippines and Belgium are already planning press conferences on March 17 and probably we will also be able to hold a press conference in Baghdad. It would be great if your organization can also hold a press conference or issue a media release to announce the campaign to the media on or around March 17. Please inform us of place, date and time and don’t forget to post a report (with pictures!) on www.health-now.org.
Submit March 20 plans
March 20 is also the global day of protest against war and occupation and many of you will participate on that day in activities where the Health NOW! campaign can be introduced. Please send us your organization’s March 20 plans so we can announce them on the website.
The Health NOW! campaign does not have any paid staff and relies on volunteers and the contributions of the participating organizations. Many volunteers are needed to translate (especially English, French and Spanish), to help in the maintenance of the website, to develop campaign materials etc. If you know people who are willing to volunteer, please bring them in touch with us.
Invite other organizations to join
As of today, the following networks and organizations have joined the campaign:
International networks: People’s Health Movement (PHM), International People’s Health Council (IPHC), International League of People’s Struggle – ad hoc health commission (ILPS), Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR), Pesticide Action Network Asia-Pacific (PAN-AP)
Initial list of local organizations:
Belgium: intal/Medical Aid for the Third World, Artsen voor Vrede/IPPNW
Iran: People’s Health Movement Iran
Italia: Democrazia Popolare
Korea: Korean Federation of Medical Groups for Health Right (KFHR)
México: Colectivo Salud en Movimiento, Salud Comunitaria de La Huasteca (Capás México)
Palestine: Union of Health Work Committees (UHWC), Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees (UPMRC)
Philippines: People’s Health Movement Philippines, Health Action for Human Rights (HAHR), Pesticide Action Network Philippines, Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD), Council for Health and Development (CHD)
Syria: Yarmouk NGO
US: The Hesperian Foundation, International Action Center, PUSO Seattle
Many more groups and organizations will be added to this list. Please invite your network to sign up formally as one of the participating organizations.
10. Give us your recommendations and suggestions
Don’t hesitate to send your suggestions and recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org or circulate them among the participating organizations through this mailing list: email@example.com..
Success with the preparations fro March 20! We’ll be sending you more updates soon.
In solidarity for people’s health,