Reports on the Human Right to Health Submitted to the United Nations’ Universal Periodic Review

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The U.S. Human Rights Network (USHRN) submitted 24 joint reports on human rights in the United States to the United Nation’s Human Rights Council, which is conducting a review (the Universal Periodic Review, or UPR) of how the United States is meeting its human rights obligations.

Here is a list of joint reports that pay special attention to health-related issues:

Racial Discrimination

The CERD Task Force, a subgroup of the US Human Rights Network, was formed in 2007 to coordinate a national civil society shadow report that was submitted to the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in 2008. The Task Force is made up of organizations that represent the leading voices in human rights and racial justice.  Their core mission is to ensure the effective implementation of the ICERD and its key obligations at the national and local level.

Contact: Ramona Ortega, Ramona.Ortega at

Economic and Social Rights

The coalition of stakeholders submitting this report are calling for the recognition, protection and fulfillment of social and economic rights in the United States, including the rights to education, health, housing, work, and social security. The coordinating organization, the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative, is a non-profit human rights organization established in 2004.

The report can be downloaded here.

Environmental Justice

This report is submitted by a coalition of stakeholders dedicated to the implementation of human rights obligations in the area of environmental justice, and addresses how communities of color and low-income communities in the United States are disproportionately burdened by environmentally harmful human activities and their adverse health consequences. The main submitting organizations for this report are the Center on Race, Poverty, and the Environment (CRPE) and New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI). Founded in 1989, CRPE is an environmental justice litigation organization dedicated to helping grassroots groups across the United States attack head on the disproportionate burden of pollution borne by poor people and people of color. Founded in 1976, NYLPI is a nonprofit, civil rights law firm that strives for social justice through impact litigation, community organizing and advocacy.

Contact: Gavin Kearney, GKearney at or Caroline Farrell, CFarrell at


This report was prepared by organizations of people with disabilities working at national and local levels for human rights and individual self-determination.

Contact: Tina Minkowitz, TMinkowitz at

Race and Health

The stakeholders submitting this report are dedicated to the elimination of racial health disparities in the United States.

Contact: Vernellia Randall, VRRandall at

Reproductive Rights

The coalition of stakeholders submitting this report work to advance women’s sexual and reproductive health. The coordinating organization, the Center for Reproductive Rights, is a global legal organization founded in 1992 and dedicated to advancing women’s reproductive health, self-determination and dignity as basic human rights.

Contact: Cynthia Soohoo, CSoohoo at or Michelle Movahed, MMovahed at