“I hope this is a start of getting into a more intense contact,” the representative of the World Health Organization stated at the organization’s Geneva headquarters during a meeting with indigenous delegates from around the world on July 14th. ” You have to come see us, speak to us,” he admonished. “It is a two way road…. You are the best to judge what works in your communities…. We need case studies…. To be honest we have done much too little, the more we can hammer away the better.”
Clearly, as these comments emphasize an indigenous health in human rights initiative is highly needed. Health needs to be discussed as an important agenda item at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
There should be an Indigenous World Health Report put together to link work at the WHO with indigenous work and bring about change. Developping policies that are institutionally embedded are absolutely vital.