Movement Building for Racial, Social, and Health Justice
We advocate for building and sustaining active and inclusive movements that draw attention to, and seek to overturn, the inequitable impact of race, class, and affiliation on health and well-being.
Activism is in HAI’s DNA and remains a critical tool used by our extended HAI family to advocate for more equitable health policies and strategies.
HAI advocates worked with global and local coalitions to support community organizing around issues that impact health and well being, with a focus on race and social equality. Going forward, these advocates (composed of former staff and friends of HAI) will continue to support these organizations in the same way we supported our government partners in the countries where we worked: by joining our expertise, experience, resources, and voice with theirs.
Examples include organizing events focused on refugee and immigrant health, mental health, trade and health justice, and universal primary care. We have helped facilitate anti-racist workshops and helped bring information, resources, and perspective to important issues such as police violence, nuclear deproliferation, and health activism.
In Seattle, HAI partnered with local health advocacy organizations, such as the Somali Health Board and UW Student Groups, to share research and advocacy expertise. This led to innovative new programs, such as the Mama Amman project, backed by data-driven evaluations that can be used to seek additional resources and attention to critical community needs.
HAI’s activist roots are carried through to the present day, embodied in our 2021 transition of our global operations and programs to local NGOs. HAI believes in speaking truth to power and standing up for those who remain voiceless, whether on a global or a local scale.
HAI staff are no strangers to taking to the streets. With origins in the anti-apartheid movement, HAI staff around the world have stood, marched, and joined their voices with others to draw attention to the health inequities that face marginalized and vulnerable groups.
Above, staff from HAI’s Timor-Leste office marched in the country’s 2019 Pride Parade.
HAI stands in solidarity with those protesting racism, militarism and authoritarianism in America’s law enforcement system. But we do so with great humility, to honor the Black Lives Matter organizers, community leaders, and generations of activists who have led the struggle for racial justice, dignity, and police accountability.
Read our full statement, including HAI endorsements and links to local and national actions and resources for our community.
sign ons & Resolutions
- World Says No to War on Yemen, open letter and online rally to speak out against conflict, January 20, 2021 [Sign-on]
- Rights Groups to Washington Institute: Don’t Create PR Platform for Saudi Foreign Minister, letter to the Washington Institute, October 15, 2020 [Sign-on]
- Please Do Not Attend Saudi Arabia’s G20, Open Letter to the Mayors of New York, Houston, Los Angeles, London, Rome, Paris, Madrid, Berlin, & Montreal from a global coalition of human rights and peace organizations, Sept. 20, 2020. [Sign-on]
- Open Letter to President Donald J Trump in Support of WHO, letter to the Trump Administration, April 24, 2020 [Sign-on]
- Health Alliance International Acts to Protect Syrian Health Workers, AHPA statement, February 19, 2020 [Resolution]
- Resolution from the People’s Town Hall on Nuclear Weapons, presented to Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, October 2019 [Sign-on]
- Back from the Brink: The Call to Prevent Nuclear War, endorsement of principles, 2018 [Sign-on]
- UW United Against Sweatshops: Letter to Ana Marie Cauce Denouncing Nike, letter to the President of the University of Washington, May 1, 2017 [Sign-on]
- The Lancet Public to Planetary Health Manifesto, endorsement of principles, March 14, 2014 [Sign-on]
- Women’s Letter to Christine Lagarde, open letter to the former IMF Managing Director, August 22, 2011 [Sign-on]
- Stop Forced Evictions of Haiti’s Earthquake Victims, letter to the United Nations, May 25, 2010 [Sign-on]
- Condemning Uganda’s anti-homosexuality bill, letter to Uganda government, March 22, 2010 [Sign-on]
- U.S. Groups Oppose Training of Indonesia’s Notorious Kopassus Special Forces, letter to Obama Administration, July 23, 2009 [Sign-on]
- Urge Secretary Clinton to make human rights and reform central to her visit to Indonesia, letter to former Secretary Clinton, February 7, 2009 [Sign-on]
Statements & Publications
- On Law Enforcement, Racism, and Movement Building, HAI Statement in response to the murder of George Floyd by police and the subsequent anti-racism and police violence protests, June 8, 2020 [Statement]
- PHM-USA And HAI Condemn US Atrocities At Southern Border, Stand In Solidarity With Migrants And Asylum Seekers, joint statement with the People’s Health Movement, August 1, 2019 [Statement]
- Anti-homosexual legislation and HIV-related stigma in African nations: what has been the role of PEPFAR? Global Health Action, 2017 [Publication]
- Should We End Military Recruiting in High Schools as a Matter of Child Protection and Public Health? Am J Public Health, 2011 [Publication]
Op-Eds, News & Events
- A foundation for ‘safe motherhood’ created with and for the Somali community, UW News, 2020 [News]
- Sadiq Khan urged to boycott Saudi-hosted G20 mayors summit, The Guardian, Sept. 20, 2020 [News]
- Ahoua Koné named co-chair of UW School-wide Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Committee for the 2020-2021 academic year, UW SPH News, July 17, 2020 [News]
- Seeking Mama Amaan (Safe Motherhood) in Seattle During COVID-19, Op-Ed by HAI partners on the importance of decolonizing public health, with a focus on the South Seattle Somali Community, July 13, 2020 [Guest Op-Ed]
- Feedback to Chief Best’s statement about the murder of Mr. George Floyd, Real Change, Ahoua Koné, June 3, 2020 [Op-Ed]
- Major health groups and charities urge Trump to reverse World Health Organization funding decision, CNN, April 24, 2020
- Nuclear disarmament and racial equality are inextricably linked, HAI-sponsored lecture, “African Americans Against the Bomb: Nuclear Weapons, Colonialism, and the Black Freedom Movement”, 2018 [News]
- The cause MLK fought for that we tend to forget, Crosscut, 2018 [News]
- Anniversary of Charleena Lyles’ death, HAI-hosted event honoring Lyles and offering solutions to police violence, 2018 [News]
- Preventing Infant Deaths: What can we learn from Cuba? Huffpost, 2015 [Op-Ed]
- Health and Justice in a Time of Austerity, AJPH, 2015 [Op-Ed]
- Comments by SPD chief denigrating local Ferguson protests show disregard for communities of color, Real Change, December 31, 2014 [Op-Ed]
- ‘Achieving Health for All’ is topic of 38th Annual Faculty Lecture Feb . 6, UW News, 2014 [News]
- TEDxRainier talk: Global health needs solidarity, not charity, Humanosphere, 2010 [News]
- Health Care Reform in 2009 – Mothers Leading the Way, march for healthcare reform, May 30, 2009 [Event]
- Let’s Pledge a Dime for Global Health, The Seattle Times, 2009 [Op-Ed]
- Reauthorize Our Pledge to Fight AIDS, Seattle PI, 2008 [Op-Ed]
- G-8 Commitments to Africa Unfulfilled, Seattle PI, 2007 [Op-Ed]
- Expand Public Commitment to Global AIDS Battle, The Seattle Times, 2002 [Op-Ed]
who we fight alongside
Somali Health Board
HAI proudly partnered with SHB, an active advocate for refugee and immigrant health in Seattle, on multiple initiatives, including the Mama Amman project.
People's Health Movement
HAI served on the PHM steering council, helping to organize a global movement for grassroots health activism
Explore the rest of HAI’s Advocacy Pillars
Learn More About:
Stand with HAI
Stand with HAI
Our mission is to promote policies and support programs that strengthen government primary health care and foster social, economic, and health equity for all. Our vision is a just world that promotes health and well-being, including universal access to quality health care.
Health Alliance International began in 1987 as a US-based international solidarity organization committed to supporting the public sector provision of health care for all. Over 35 years, HAI conducted programs in 17 countries, with flagship programs in Mozambique, Côte d'Ivoire, and Timor-Leste.
In line with HAI’s commitment to support and strengthen local public health leadership, as of October 2021, HAI fully transitioned global operations and active programs to locally-based, locally-led NGOs. Learn more about this shift toward local autonomy and equity in global health.
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