Campaign paper: All heroes for health | Viva Salud

Campaign paper: All heroes for health

With our ‘Only Fighters Win’ campaign we support the struggle of social movements. The healthcare heroes are not alone. They have the support of social movements from different sectors. All heroes for health!

While the corona crisis is affecting all of us, its impact is not the same for everyone. The corona virus has exposed existing inequalities in our society and is augmenting them.

Health workers, blue-collar workers and marginalized groups are exposed to far bigger infection risks and to higher mortality rates. It is evident our health systems cannot guarantee the right to health for everyone.

In their efforts to ease the pressure on hospitals and health workers and to restrain the pandemic, governments are taking drastic measures. Without respecting secure distance, hand hygiene and mouth masks, many more lives would be endangered and the pandemic’s impact would be much bigger.

But in some countries these measures put human rights under strain. Some governments are curtailing democratic freedom for an undetermined time and deploy drastic measures to impose quarantine rules.

A number of governments is also using the corona crisis against social movements and human rights defenders. They exclude social organizations from decision making, criminalize protests, impede vital humanitarian work and activists fall victim to police violence.

All this comes at a time when we need social movements more than ever as the health of billions of people is endangered. The impact of the corona crisis will be felt for years to come and will be distributed unevenly in society. Social movements play an important role in verifying the impact is dealt with in a socially just manner.

The healthcare heroes are not alone. They have the support of social movements from different sectors.

If we are to guarantee the right to health for all and want to live in a healthier, more ecological and socially just post-corona society, we need to give social movements the space to play their role. They need to be able to inform citizens and mobilize them, stimulate protests and solidarity, formulate political demands and control and criticize governments.

That is why we are launching our ‘Only Fighters Win’ campaign to support these social movements. The healthcare heroes are not alone. They have the support of social movements from different sectors. All heroes for health. A global health crisis can only be resolved through international cooperation. We therefore, via this campaign, urge the Belgian government to keep investing in international solidarity. This will allow social movements across the world to continue their struggle for health, strong public healthcare and social justice. Because only those who fight can win. They are all heroes of health. Only fighters win!