HEALTH FOR ALL!
Health workers in Australia and around the world are working in very challenging circumstances right now, either in direct response to the coronavirus pandemic, or in other parts of our healthcare system. All of us at MAPW express our sincere thanks and deep respect for the efforts of our members and colleagues, and of course our earnest desire that they remain personally safe.
MAPW has of course cancelled our fundraising and campaign events until further notice, but our staff and volunteers continue to work from home.
We continue to advocate on our key issues – abolishing nuclear weapons, and the use of human and technical resources for the welfare of people and our environment – and are responding to developing issues at home and abroad.
We are concerned about reports of critical shortages of essential protective and clinical equipment, and predicted staff and supply shortages around the country. Remote Aboriginal communities, and refugees and asylum seekers, could be among the groups at particular risk.
Abroad, we are deeply concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on people in conflict zones and refugee settings, and with the effect of punitive US sanctions on Iran’s ability to respond to the pandemic.
We’re also looking ahead.
A crisis of this scale has the potential to dramatically reorder society. Governments have long told us that our ‘security’ comes from our military: worldwide, $1 800 billion dollars a year is spent on armies and equipment with which to fight wars.
But in this global crisis, it’s healthcare workers – not soldiers – who are on the frontlines, and it’s clear that the true security of our community depends on a commitment to health and welfare for all. Our task at MAPW is to translate this new awareness into a fundamental reimagining of Australia’s notions of 'security'.