by Jean Brant, Birmingham
Jean explains why she was motivated to make her latest quilt which is now part of our collection.
Last year I submitted several patches for the National Threads of Survival quilt. It was my first foray into craftivism. I found working on them therapeutic, an outlet for my feelings of frustration and disgust at how poorly the pandemic had been managed, and especially how badly the NHS was being supported.
My ancient fingers fumbled, but my ire and anger gave me fire.
When I read the comments from those who viewed the quilts, who took the messages to heart, I was inspired to do more. My heart breaks to see how the NHS is being handed to the corporate sector, without regard to the suffering this will cause. To see health staff so badly treated, so poorly rewarded, so low in morale, after their sacrifices and dedicated service.
I spent 25 years as a children’s nurse and “Impact of Climate Change on Health” reflects my move from healthcare to public health, first as a health visitor, then lecturing on Public Health at University.
Public Health focuses on preventing health problems, addressing the underlying causes. Much evidence shows that the greatest threat to our health and well-being is the climate and ecological emergency.
The International Panel on Climate Change have told us humanity’s risk of extinction is high, at code red. Yet our government, and others, increase the threat by still more fossil fuel mining, despite the scientific evidence.
I placed a baby in the centre to show who will suffer most. Then the multiple impacts of climate breakdown on the determinants of health. Covid will seem mild compared with the devastation to come. Services will break down due to overload. Food and water will be scarce. We are standing on a precipice.
Yet those in charge dither and delay, ignoring this most existential of threats. I was at COP 26, and know that there were more fossil fuel lobbyists there than delegates. Profits are prioritised over people.
Many are protesting against climate breakdown, some willing to go to prison to make the message heard. Demanding governments Act, before it’s too late.
We desperately need Climate Justice Now.
Denice’s quilt can be seen as part of the full collection – visit this page to find out where the exhibition is being displayed. CLICK HERE
We want to thank Jean for opening up this issue – the relationship between the Climate Crisis and our personal and collective health. Especially at a time when the ethics of an NHS for everyone has been all but been thrown away. We need to understand the consequences of the political decision to let the USA profit-seeking model take over.