• Promoting and protecting health and respecting, protecting and fulfilling human rights are inextricably linked, and every country in the world is now party to at least one human rights treaty that addresses health-related rights and the conditions necessary for health. The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes that “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family.” Download the complete brochure.

  • Klity Creek. Kanchanaburi, Thailand. December 8, 2014.
    (Bangkok) – The Thai government has failed to clean up toxic lead in a stream in western Thailand, threatening hundreds of families with serious and irreversible health problems, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Supreme Administrative Court’s order nearly two years ago to clean up Klity Creek, the first of its kind in Thailand, has been ignored by the government while villagers remain exposed to lead in water, soil, vegetables, and fish.

  • Health Under AttackOver the past few years, the frequency and severity of attacks on health workers, patients, hospitals and clinics throughout the world have increased.

    In Pakistan and Nigeria, more than 70 polio vaccination workers have been killed. In Bahrain and Turkey, health workers have been arrested for providing care to individuals protesting government policies. In Syria, hundreds of patients and health workers have been arbitrarily arrested, killed and tortured, and hospitals and health clinics have been targeted and bombed.

    In 2012 and 2013 alone, the International Committee of the Red Cross identified 1,809 specific incidents in 23 countries in which violence was used against patients, health workers, ambulances or medical facilities.

    This report describes recent examples of attacks on health in order to raise attention to this issue among the global health community, the human rights community, and those responsible for the attacks. The escalating level of attacks targeted against health care must be recognized as a critical human rights issue. Global and national human rights institutions should take action to ensure that practical steps are taken to protect health workers and facilities, and protect access to health care for all who need it.

    Download the Report (PDF)

     

Reports

Health

  • Dec 17, 2014
  • Dec 16, 2014
    Klity Creek is now also one of the most heavily polluted industrial sites in all of Thailand. Eleven kilometres upstream is a former lead-processing factory. The factory, which started its operations in the mid-1960s, was ordered to close in 1998. But its toxic legacy remains.
  • Dec 15, 2014
    (Bangkok) – The Thai government has failed to clean up toxic lead in a stream in western Thailand, threatening hundreds of families with serious and irreversible health problems, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Supreme Administrative Court’s order nearly two years ago to clean up Klity Creek, the first of its kind in Thailand, has been ignored by the government while villagers remain exposed to lead in water, soil, vegetables, and fish.
  • Dec 10, 2014
    (Mexico City) – The Mexican Health Ministry took an important step on December 09, 2014, to ensure access to palliative care for people suffering from pain due to incurable illness, Human Rights Watch said today. The government released long-awaited guidelines to its healthcare system that will operationalize provisions on end-of-life care outlined in Mexico’s 2009 health law.
  • Dec 3, 2014
    In India, many women and girls with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities are locked up in institutions against their will. Some of the institutions for those women, who have disabilities ranging from Down Syndrome and cerebral palsy to schizophrenia and depression, are filthy and overcrowded. Human Rights Watch’s Kriti Sharma spoke with Amy Braunschweiger about the 24 institutions she and other researchers visited across four Indian states – including government mental hospitals and government and private residential care facilities – for the new report, “’Treated Worse than Animals.’“ This is what they found.
  • Dec 3, 2014
    Human Rights Watch has significant expertise in investigating and analyzing aid delivery in Haiti, in particular, through a human rights framework. Within weeks of the January 12, 2010 earthquake, Human Rights Watch began monitoring the aid response in Haiti and human rights concerns that were emerging. In the months after the quake, Human Rights Watch raised particular concerns with the United Nations and other key actors about gaps in protection measures for women and girls in the camps and documented a few cases of sexual violence.
  • Dec 2, 2014
  • Nov 30, 2014
  • Nov 28, 2014
  • Nov 21, 2014
    When Abid was five, immigration officials arrested him and his family, Pakistani refugees fleeing religious persecution. The officials took them to the squalid immigration detention centre in central Bangkok. There, they joined hundreds of other refugees detained indefinitely, awaiting some distant possibility of release.