Torture and other ill-treatment are illegal under international and domestic law.
They are further prohibited under our codes of ethics, because they breach the most fundamental tenet
that health professionals commit themselves to uphold: do no harm.
As health professionals, we use our scientific and professional knowledge and skills to serve humanity.
Yet torture degrades the health and dignity of human beings and damages not only victims, their
families, and their communities, but also perpetrators, institutions, and society itself.
In addition, as professionals guided by the best available evidence, we note that torture has been proven
an ineffective means of interrogation. Using torture generates flawed intelligence and contradicts the
best practices of interrogation experts.
Throughout history, members of our professions have been enlisted by governments to legitimize and
sanction the use of torture. Most recently, after 9/11, American health professionals helped design and
implement the systematic torture and abuse of national security detainees.
With the looming threat of a return to torture as official U.S. policy, health professionals must form a
critical line of defense. We must stand together and affirm that torture is illegal, unethical, immoral,
and harmful. Now, more than ever, we must put the U.S. government on notice that we are committed to the
legal and ethical responsibilities of our professions.
Take action to stand up for justice–sign the petition below.