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International Human Rights Committee


IHRC is now on Google Groups! To stay up-to-date on the committee's activities and work on international human rights issues, we invite you to subscribe.

Information about the IHRC


“Rights are claims or entitlements to something or against someone that are recognized by legal rules or moral principles. A human right is a morally-based, higher-order universal right that it belongs equally to all persons simply because they are human beings.” [i]  

The International Human Rights Committee (IHRC) is a 10-member group reporting to the Executive Board of the American Public Health Association (APHA), that focuses on international health and human rights concerns.

The mission of the APHA International Human Rights Committee is to provide an impartial platform where scholars and professionals in the field can come together to examine, discuss, and take action on human rights issues that have an impact on public health.


The IHRC provides guidance to the APHA Executive Board and membership regarding human rights issues of public health concern around the world. The IHRC sponsors a poster session and three scientific sessions during the APHA annual meeting and the IHRC membership is responsible for the organziation of these sessions. Additionally, many members of the IHRC authored chapters in the recently released text, “Rights Based Approaches to Public Health” which was co-edited by Elvira Beracochea (IHRC member), Corey Weinstein, (past IHRC chair) and Dabney Evans (current IHRC chair). 


IHRC members have special involvement with human rights activities in various areas of the world, e.g. Latin America, South Africa, Russia, Southeast Asia. Members serve two-year terms that can be repeated.

The IHRC is chaired by one individual and typically consists of 10-12 members, each serving a two-year term. The IHRC must remain small and flexible to allow it to move quickly when necessary. Members may be nominated during APHA’s annual nomination period. The APHA Executive Board appoints Committee members. Members also may be nominated (or self-nominated) via the APHA Leadership mechanism. Additionally, interested APHA members may participate informally based on substantive interest. Professional experience with human rights issues is a valuable asset for potential members of this committee. 

The IHRC meets during the APHA Annual Meeting. Additionally, during the year, members keep in touch and network through conference calls and e-mails.  Additionally, interested members of the APHA may choose to participate in the activities conducted by the IHRC by indicating their interest to do so to the current chair.

Committee Chair: Dr. Benjamin Mason Meier,   


Dr. Kristopher Fennie

Dr. Timothy H. Holtz

Dr. Luba Louise Ivanov

Dr. Emma Mitchell

Dr. David Liu

Dr. Leonard Rubenstein  

Dr. Vamsi Vasireddy

Dr. Jerry Vincent

Dr. Judith L. Wold

APHA Staff Liaison:
Vina HuLamm
Office: (202) 777-2506


[i] Easley, C. E., Marks, S. P., & Morgan, R. E. (Dec. 2001). The Challenge and Place of International Human Rights in Public Health. American Journal of Public Health, 91 (12), 1922-1925.