War and conflict are major causes of human suffering. They also cause environmental degradation, perpetuate inequalities and undermine democracy. Nuclear bombs and other indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction are incompatible with the public health aims of safety and health protection.
But a vast complex of standing armies, militias, weapons manufacturers, arms traders and politicians promote war, violence and militarism out of self-interest and greed, or because they fail to see better alternatives for resolving conflict and disputes.
Health professionals have a long history of: providing humanitarian relief; facilitating ceasefires and the cessation of conflict; promoting disarmament and peacebuilding; and providing impartial evidence on the perpetration of war crimes.
Medact grew out of the medical peace movement and is the UK affiliate of the Nobel Laureate International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW).
Medact continues to promote disarmament and encourage investment in nonviolent responses to conflict; seek the abolition of nuclear weapons; and reduce the power and influence of the global military-industrial complex. It promotes the universal right to health as a platform for peace building and more effective international diplomacy and cooperation.
The right of everyone to ‘the highest attainable standards of physical and mental health’ is enshrined within the 1966 UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) placing both a moral and a legal imperative on the UK to produce policies...
Dr. Elizabeth Waterston explains the impacts of nuclear war and exposes the myths surrounding the use of nuclear weapons as a ‘deterrent’, before answering the crucial question: how can we end the nuclear threat?
Despite a staff shortfall, the government has blocked visas for 400 doctors recruited by the NHS. Is government prioritising its commitment to immigration controls over patient well-being and public health?
The mental health of the UK Armed Forces and veterans – Medact submission to Defence Select Committee
We publish evidence submitted by Medact to the Defence Select Committee for its inquiry into the mental health of Armed Forces and veterans, outlining serious concerns related to the mental health impacts of the UK practice of recruiting adolescents to its military.
On her recent trip to the UK, ICAN Executive Director Beatrice Fihn visited Scotland and the naval base at Faslane where Trident nuclear weapons are housed.