Australian news, and some related international items

Dr Helen Caldicott – a prophet With Honour outside her own country


the Smithsonian has named Dr. Caldicott one of the most influential women of the 20th century.

(Now why isn’t Dr Caldicott being asked as a witness in the South Australian Nuclear Citizens jury?) 

#WomanCrushWednesday: Dr. Helen Caldicott by Honora Gibbons, WAND Intern, Arlington, MA Dr. Helen Caldicott holds a special place in our hearts and history at WAND as our founder. Over her long career, she has demonstrated tremendous passion, skill, and dedication for consistently raising and calling citizens to action on the pressing nuclear and environmental issues of our time.

Caldicott was born in Melbourne, Australia. She earned her medical degree from the University of Adelaide Medical School. Her anti-nuclear stance is rooted in her identity as a physician and as a mother. As Caldicott spoke publicly on the health hazards of radiation, she rose to prominence as an activist for nuclear disarmament.

In the 1970s, Dr. Caldicott moved to the United States, joining Boston’s Children’s Hospital and briefly teaching pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. In 1979, the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster occurred, the worst nuclear power accident in U.S. history. Following this, in 1980, Caldicott resigned from her medical career in order to dedicate herself fully to the prevention of nuclear warfare and dependency on nuclear power. From then on, she worked to call attention to the world’s growing reliance on nuclear power and the dangers of the nuclear arms race.

In 1981, Caldicott founded Women’s Action for Nuclear Disarmament in Arlington, MA. (Following the end of the Cold War in 1991, WAND changed its name to Women’s Action for New Directions.) Her years of service are a constant reminder and inspiration to WAND women that peace can be attained through relentless and well-informed collective action.

For her decades of work Helen has received many honors and awards, including twenty one honorary doctoral awards and nomination for a Nobel Peace Prize by Linus Pauling, himself a Nobel Laureate. Additionally, the Smithsonian has named Dr. Caldicott one of the most influential women of the 20th century.

Helen Caldicott has contributed much through her nuclear disarmament activism and research. The highlights of these contributions are her numerous publications, including her booksNuclear Madness,Missile Envy, and If You Love This Planet: A Plan to Heal the Earth. She is also the subject of manyfilms which have received notable critical acclaim.

Caldicott currently divides her time between Australia and the United States, often lecturing and participating in community outreach, still determined to stress the danger of our nuclear-dependent world. Caldicott exemplifies these efforts through her organization, The Helen Caldicott Foundation, which hosts symposiums and educational outreach programs in order to promote a nuclear energy- and weapons-free world.

At a recent event for the Massachusetts Peace Action Distinguished Peacebuilders Series, Dr. Helen Caldicott spoke in Cambridge, Massachusetts on the imperative need to disarm nuclear weapons worldwide. In her talk titled “Courting Armageddon,” Caldicott discussed the ways in which the international community has insufficiently addressed nuclear weapons-related catastrophes, including the 1945 bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. According to Dr. Caldicott, the world has since increased its dependency on nuclear weapons and nuclear power. “We are closer to a nuclear war today than we ever were during the Cold War,” Caldicott urged.

Dr. Helen Caldicott is a trailblazer and role model, not only for the women at WAND, but for women everywhere who seek to make the world a healthier, safer, more peaceful place.

A brief history of WAND can be found on our website:

For more information on Helen, visit:

July 1, 2016 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Opposition to nuclear

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