For the week of 17 to 20 July 2023
#PandemicTreaty #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
The World Health Organization (WHO) is spearheading the development of a global agreement, known as the Pandemic Treaty, aimed at handling health crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. See our PSI Explainer for more background.
The Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) has been drafting this treaty since February 2023 which involves input from a variety of actors, including health and care workers.
Health and care workers have been making sure their voices are heard by talking with government leaders, writing letters, and sharing their demands. These efforts have yielded positive results, as the latest Bureau text has multiple references to the rights of health and care workers.
But there's more work to do. While we continue to advocate for improved protections and better working conditions, we face setbacks in significant areas. For more information, see our in-depth analysis at the end of our Call to Action.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we actively campaigned for fairer access to vaccines. Our efforts led to a reflection of our concerns in the initial drafts of the treaty. But now, these provisions have been weakened, so it's more important than ever that we continue to advocate for our cause.
The next round of negotiations is happening from July 17-21 and we need your help to make sure our collective voice is heard at the WHO.
Join our social media action on Monday, 17th July 2023 to collectively call on to the member states of WHO to prioritise worker’s rights in the Pandemic Treaty.
What you can do:
Your action will help amplify the voices of health care workers and civil society across the world!
Health and care workers are the frontline defence against pandemics. They deserve safety, protection & Decent Work. @WHO, make these a cornerstone of the #PandemicTreaty #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
Decent Work conditions are non-negotiable, even during a pandemic! @WHO, labour rights, improved conditions & adequate ratios for health and care workers need to be a cornerstone of the #PandemicTreaty. Dignity for health and care workers. #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
Public funding in health research is crucial. @WHO, the #PandemicTreaty should ensure transparency and accountability in using public funds for pandemic solutions. #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
Monopolies on life-saving treatments and vaccines impede global access. We need a #TRIPSWaiver during a health crisis. @WHO, include this crucial provision in the #PandemicTreaty #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
Let's learn from COVID-19: health crises require collective action and solidarity. We call on @WHO to ensure the #PandemicTreaty protects worker rights, funds public research, and ensures equitable access to treatments #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
Universal health access is a right, not a privilege. @WHO, ensure the #PandemicTreaty includes robust mechanisms for equitable distribution of treatments and vaccines. #INB6 #ProtectWorkers
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Health and Care Workers' Rights and Safety:
As we've seen throughout the pandemic, health and care workers are our frontline defence. They've shown bravery, dedication, and resilience, working tirelessly to protect us all. Their voices matter now more than ever. We urge the World Health Organization to prioritise and safeguard their rights in the ongoing negotiations for the #PandemicTreaty #INB6. These workers' safety, protection, and right to decent work must be at the very cornerstone of the treaty. The dignity of health and care workers should not be compromised, even in the face of a pandemic. The treaty should secure measures against violence and intimidation while ensuring decent work conditions. We stand with health workers globally, they deserve respect, protection, and fair treatment. #ProtectWorkers
Public Funding Transparency and Accountability:
Public funding plays a crucial role in response to a pandemic. That's why transparency and accountability in its use should be a non-negotiable aspect of the #PandemicTreaty. We call on the World Health Organization to hold manufacturers accountable. Companies that benefit from public funds must disclose their prices and contracts. As actors in global health, we have a right to know how our resources are being utilised. The Pandemic Treaty should ensure complete transparency and accountability in using public funds for pandemic solutions. #ProtectWorkers #INB6
One big concern is about the #PandemicTreaty #INB6 is funding for medical research. During COVID-19, public money helped create new treatments and vaccines. But some companies then took this publicly-funded research and made it private, making a lot of profit. The first version of the treaty included a provision that said companies who get public money have to be transparent about their prices and contracts, but this got taken out of the new draft. We see this as a step backward and need to fight against it. We call on the World Health Organization (@WHO) to hold manufacturers accountable.
Intellectual Property Rights and Access to Treatments:
During a health crisis, actions speak louder than words. That's why we need @WHO to commit to Intellectual Property (IP) waivers during pandemics in the #PandemicTreaty. This is about accelerating our collective response to save lives. Access to life-saving treatments must not be monopolised - our global community deserves better. The treaty should ensure genuine access to pandemic solutions and include waivers on patents to facilitate this. Remember, intellectual property rights should never outweigh human lives. #ProtectWorkers #INB6
One big concern about the #PandemicTreaty #INB6 is who gets access to life-saving treatments and vaccines. Right now, some companies have a monopoly on making these products. This makes it harder for everyone around the world to get what they need. We need a rule in the treaty which says that in a health crisis, these monopolies should be paused to let more companies produce these products. But this idea has been watered down in the new draft. #ProtectWorkers #INB6
Equity in Global Health Policy:
Health crises do not discriminate; they can affect anyone, anywhere. That's why our response needs to be all-encompassing. We've learned from COVID-19 that health crises require collective action, solidarity, and an equity-based approach. Let's ensure that the Pandemic Treaty reflects these lessons, protects worker rights, funds public research, and guarantees equitable access to treatments. We urge the @WHO to include robust mechanisms for equitable distribution of treatments and vaccines in the #PandemicTreaty. No one is safe until everyone is safe. #ProtectWorkers #INB6
Social media handles
World Health Organization (WHO)
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesusm
Director-General of the World Health Organization.
WHO Regional Office for Europe
WHO Regional Office for the Americas
WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific, including Asia & Oceania.
WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean
WHO Regional Office for Africa
WHO Regional Office for South-East Asia
Our CSO Allies
Medicus Mundi International
Third World Network
Society for International Development (SID)
Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)
Health Action International (HAI)
Our World Is Not for Sale
People's Vaccine Alliance
MSF Access Campaign (Médecins Sans Frontières)
People's Health Movement
People's Vaccine Alliance Africa
Lori Wallach (Director of Rethink Trade)
Our Union Allies
Public Services International
European Public Service Union
UNI Global Union
International Transport Workers' Federation
Building and Wood Workers' International
International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers' Associations
International Trade Union Confederation
Communications Electrical Plumbing Union
Community and Public Sector Union - SPSF Group
New South Wales Nurses and Midwives' Association
Community and Public Sector Union - PSU Group
Australian Municipal, Administrative, Clerical and Services Union
Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation - SA Branch
United Services Union
Delhi State Electricity Workers Union
All Japan Prefectural and Municipal Workers Union
Federation of Korean Public Industry Trade Unions
New Zealand Public Service Association
All Sindh Lady Health Workers and Employees Union
Maldives Health Professional Union