Wed, Mar 30, 2011: No Health in Occupation, No Health in Apartheid

At the Intersection of Public Health and the Israel-Palestine Conflict

Date: Wednesday, March 30th, 2011
Time: 6:30-8:30 PM
Location: Room 103, FitzGerald Building (150 College St., University of Toronto)

Ruchama Marton is an Israeli psychiatrist, founder and president of Physicians for Human Rights – Israel (PHR-I). Dr. Marton has been awarded many prizes for her human rights activism, including the Emil Grunzweig Human Rights Award, the Helen Prize for Women, and the Jonathan Mann Award for Global Health and Human Rights. In 2005, she was one of 1000 women across the world nominated collectively for the Nobel Peace Prize. In 2010, Marton and PHR-I were the laureates of the Right Livelihood Award (the Alternative Nobel Prize).

Atif Kubursi is a Professor Emeritus of Economics at McMaster University whose research focuses on environmental and economic issues facing the Middle East. He is the recipient of the Canadian Centennial Medal and served as the Acting Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia.

Abdel Rahman Lawendy is an Orthopedic Surgery and Trauma consultant at the London Health Sciences Centre in London, Ontario. Dr. Lawendy travelled to Gaza along with an international medical team during Operation Cast Lead.

This is a special panel discussion on the politics of health and disease and its impact on the Palestinian body, nation and land. The Israel-Palestine conflict offers an important site of analysis for the various uses and misuses of public health to legitimize competing ideologies. More importantly, it reveals our tendency to overlook sociopolitical complexities and power differentials when intervening in health systems and their processes. This panel will explore the dangers associated with this approach and highlight those public health efforts which have mobilized to alleviate the social suffering faced by Palestinians living within Israel and the Occupied Territories of West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

In solidarity with Palestinian struggles for justice, individual health professionals and groups like Physicians for Human Rights-Israel have attempted to articulate and practice a politics of health that confronts the occupation as a social disease in Palestinian society. Social Justice Collective invites you to join in a thought-provoking discussion on the type of relationship we must develop as a public health community to the politics of occupation and apartheid.

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