Academic researchers, community partners, and community leaders from across the United States are collaborating to address the variables that impact Black Health.
April is National Minority Health Month and the Council on Black Health met mid-month and released the nation’s first Black Health Bill of Rights, in their efforts to reimagine and set a national agenda for Black health.
The council advocates for a collective movement to improve health in Black communities,” said Melicia Whitt-Glover, executive director of the council. “The Black Health Bill of Rights demonstrates our commitment to changing the narrative on Black health in the United States and for people of the African Diaspora worldwide.”
The Black Health Bill of Rights includes seven articles: Article 1 states that Black people have the right to a culture of health that values our whole wellbeing and allows us to achieve optimal health. Articles 2 and 3 reinforce the right of Black people to receive respectful and dignified healthcare that is culturally sensitive and incorporates structural equity.
Articles 4, 5, and 6 address solutions to Black health from a strengths-based approach, reclaiming power and autonomy, and the right to honor and incorporate lessons from the past, present, and future as a pathway to restoring health in communities. Article 7 emphasizes that Black people have the right to live in a society that is free from the violence, hostility, and racism that has for so long, impacted physical and mental health in the Black community.
“We have a national network of partners who collaborate with us and who are going to be instrumental in making the Articles of the Black Health Bill of Rights a reality,” said Whitt-Glover.
The concept for the Black Health Bill of Rights was conceived by council member Tambra Raye Stevenson. It has been endorsed by a number of organizations, including: Gramercy Research Group, National Black Child Development Institute (NBCDI), National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, Nova Scripts Central RX and 100 Black Men of America, Inc.
The Council on Black Health is a research and action network that provides thought leadership to develop and implement a national agenda for Black health through a focus on partnerships, research, policy advocacy and permanence.