People’s Health Movement UK (PHM UK) is the UK circle of the global People’s Health Movement. We are a collective of individuals, activists, academics organising for health justice, as set out by the principles of the People’s Charter for Health.
We are currently coordinating the development of a People’s Health Watch (PHW). This will be an emerging space for people, communities and movement to collectively share their ideas, actions, ways of thinking that are resisting current systems of oppression and imagining what visions of health justice can look like in the future.
Please join us to help build a participatory movement for health justice in the UK and abroad. We would love to hear from you – get in touch here!
The Story of the People’s Health Movement
The health of populations throughout the world is being devastated by global and national neoliberal policies. Since the financial crisis, governments internationally have enacted ‘austerity’ agendas effectively deepening and reinforcing the very economic system that has resulted in the crisis in the first place. PHM continues to challenge and fight against these measures.
PHM-UK is one of the many country circles of the People’s Health Movement. It is also part of the PHM Europe Network. PHM UK members are closely associated with these larger networks, participating in activities that include the Global People’s Health Assemblies, Global and European International People’s Health Universities (IPHUs), the WHO Watches, and contributions to the alternative health report, the Global Health Watch.
PHM UK, has organised national, regional and local activities to mirror the global programmes. We organised a People’s Health Assembly in Nottingham in parallel to the 2012 Global People’s Health Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa. Since then, we’ve arranged two further UK People’s Health Assemblies in Scotland in 2014 and Tower Hamlets in 2016. The People’s Health Assembly in the Scottish Circle grew out of, and continues to result in a groundswell of advocacy, participatory health action research and public hearings, providing a platform for citizens to testify to the denial of their health rights. advocacy and participatory health research in our Scottish circle, supported various hearings across the UK providing a platform to citizens to testify to denial of their health rights. The Tower Hamlets People’s Health Assembly had its focus on local priorities and issues, developed in collaboration with local organisations.
PHM UK also ran IPHU courses in London in 2009, 2010 and 2011, attended by local and European participants, and an IPHU as part of the local 2016 programme in Tower Hamlets.
These events are in addition to a range of smaller UK based activities, spanning the two decades since the inception of PHM in 2000. These include organising and hosting public meetings and participating in a range of conferences, meetings, festivals and reports.
We continue to organise in support of the principles behind the People’s Charter for Health and are looking for activists, academics and individuals to join us to help build a participatory movement for health justice in the UK and abroad.
MEET THE TEAM
PHM-UK coordinating group
We are a group based all across the UK who meet regularly online and in person to support the PHM platform in the UK. We currently hold monthly teleconferences to coordinate our activities and aim to hold a meeting in person of our group at least four times a year. You can read here about our current active coordinating group members and can get in touch with the group by contacting us.
The People’s Health Movement (PHM) is a global network bringing together grassroots health activists, civil society organizations and academic institutions from around the world, particularly from low and middle income countries). We currently have a presence in around 70 countries. Guided by the People’s Charter for Health (PCH), PHM works on various programmes and activities and is committed to Comprehensive Primary Health Care and addressing the Social, Environmental and Economic Determinants of Health.
PHM has its roots deep in the grassroots people’s movement and owes its genesis to many health networks and activists who have been concerned by the growing inequities in health over the last 25 years. The PHM calls for a revitalisation of the principles of the Alma-Ata Declaration which promised Health for All by the year 2000 and complete revision of international and domestic policy that has shown to impact negatively on health status and systems.
PHM has a vision of equity, ecologically-sustainable development and peace – a world in which a healthy life for all is a reality; a world that respects, appreciates and celebrates all life and diversity; a world that enables the flowering of people’s talents and abilities to enrich each other; a world in which people’s voices guide the decisions that shape our lives. The movement seeks to achieve this vision through:
Read more about PHM-Global and its history and objectives at their website.
PHM members in the UK have been active on several fronts in the struggle for health justice.
In October 2015 PHM-UK prepared a submission to the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights with JustFair on Implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Later in 2015 one of our coordinating group members Anuj Kapilashrami published an article in the Journal of Public Health on Social Movements and Public Health Advocacy in Action: the UK People’s Health Movement, describing our history advocating for health and human rights in the UK and some critical reflections on the movement.
PHM-Scotland in March 2016 launched their Scottish People’s Health Manifesto focussed on the elections in Scotland. The manifesto was presented to each of the political parties in Scotland and was picked up by some of the parties in their own manifestos as a result of successful advocacy by PHM Scotland members.