We speak out

We speak out

50th Union World Conference on Lung Health - Protest Caption
The moment protesters take over the stage during the official opening ceremony of the 50th Union Conference on Lung Health to demand fairer pricing for tuberculosis treatments.

For many, MSF is synonymous with emergency medical teams tackling disasters, wars and epidemics around the world. But we also work to raise awareness and create debate about these crises by speaking out.

We may speak out publicly when we want to bring a ‘forgotten’ crisis into view, or where we see things taking place which harm those that we seek to assist.

In some cases, this may mean criticising governments, corporations or other organisations who are perpetuating abuses or implementing harmful policies. But, any such criticism is always grounded in the realities of our work, and the experiences of our project staff and the people and communities we assist.

"We are not sure that words can always save lives, but we know that silence can certainly kill"

Dr James Orbinski
Former MSF president

In recent years we have spoken out against attacks on healthcare workers and facilities, harmful policies targeting refugees, and the restriction of access to lifesaving medical treatments, just to give a few examples.

Through our advocacy and communications activities – and the work of MSF’s Access Campaign – we aim to highlight these problems and ultimately drive changes to improve the situation of the people we seek to assist.

Collectively, the MSF movement works to help the people in the greatest need, wherever and whenever they need it. This will always be what motivates us. 


We also believe it is important for us to hold ourselves publicly accountable for our work and our shortcomings, and to be clear about the challenges we face.

We aim to live up to the same standards of transparency and accountability that we would expect from others, and that our supporters and the people we assist would rightly expect from us.

We publish regular updates on issues including abuse and responsible behaviour, and institutional racism, diversity, equity and inclusion. We also seek to engage publicly in response to questions we receive via the news media, social media, and directly from our supporters.

If you have a question about any aspect of our work then please contact us.