Our work at AKA has the potential to address social injustices, promote public health, and change what we think we know about the world. People often ask what social justice has to do with evaluation and public health. The answer is everything. This semester I have been teaching and learning about public health and justice from my students at the University of North Carolina Greensboro. For some, this is their first time considering their position and place within the field of public health and social justice. Students learn and see that not everyone is born with equal rights and opportunities- including the right to health. Guest speakers and interviews from across the US represent varying positions, people, and perspectives.
A key factor in promoting social justice and health is addressing injustices when they occur and where they occur. Most injustices related to public health and access to health are rooted in structures and systems that are hard to change. The question of what determines health is at the core of all of this work because once we know the answer to this question, we can work together to promote health and justice for all.