For generations, persons of color have long been denied equal access to opportunity in the United States. Disparities in health between Whites and Black, Indigenous, Latinos and other people of color is one important example. Persons of color are dying at higher rates because of systemic racist policies aimed to exclude persons. It is well documented that social inequities in housing, transportation, education, healthcare, and public safety have caused harm. Racism is a public health crisis, and the remedy requires shifts in policy and systems at the local, state, and federal levels of government.
Community Action believes that all people are entitled to human dignity and access to health and well-being. We invite local Community Action Agencies and State Associations to join a host of government and nonprofit organizations in declaring that racism is a public health crisis and pledging to eliminate structural racism and other barriers to health equity through place-based solutions.
The following Community Action resources are available to support your local efforts:
• Read the National Community Action Partnership Declaration: Racism Is A Public Health Crisis
• Develop Your Own Community Action Declares Racism Is a Public Health Crisis Statement: Download the Community Action Declaration Template Need help or more information? Contact: Denise Harlow, CEO, National Community Action Partnership, firstname.lastname@example.org or Tiffney Marley, Vice President for Practice, email@example.com
• Racism Is a Public Health Crisis Resource Guide
You can use some of the resources highlighted below to update local statistics/data from your community.
Want Your City/County to Declare Racism a Public Health Crisis?
Salud America!, led by Dr. Amelie Ramirez of UT Health San Antonio, has developed resources to help communities declare Racism as a Public Health Crisis.
This Action Pack developed by Dr. Ramirez’s team has 3 steps to help you get input from local advocates of color, start a conversation with local leaders, and build local support for a resolution to declare racism a public health crisis along with a commitment to take action to change policies and practices!
The Action Pack includes:
• FAQs. Why is racism a public health crisis? How can a city resolution help? Etc.
• Customizable City Resolution (Word)
• Health Equity Report Card by County
• Mapping Inequality: Redlining in New Deal America Interactive Map
• Talking Points
• Technical Assistance
• And more!
Click here to access the complete tool kit.
Salud America! is a national Latinx-focused organization that creates culturally relevant and research-based stories and tools to inspire people to drive healthy changes to policies, systems, and environments for Latinx children and families. The network is a project of the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at UT Health San Antonio.
Additional Resources From the Field to Deepen Your Understanding
Center for Disease Control:
• Statement from CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH on Racism and Health
• Confronting Institutionalized Racism by Camara Phyllis Jones, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D.
• Levels of Racism: A Theoretic Framework and a Gardener’s Tale
• Expert Perspectives: Tackling Racism as a Public Health Issue Starts at Home by Helene D. Gayle, MD, MPH/ President & CEO for The Chicago Community Trust
National Institutes of Health:
American Public Health Association:
• Map of Declarations
• APHA Webinar Series: Advancing Racial Equity
• APHA Webinar Series: The Impact of Racism on the Health and Well-Being of the Nation
• Research and Intervention on Racism as a Fundamental Cause of Ethnic Disparities in Health:
Community Action Resources:
• Action for a Better Community (ABC) 2021 Virtual Conference Series – Racism is a Public Health Crisis: Attacking the 2 Pandemics
• National Community Action Partnership — Federal Policy Platform
• NCAP Policing Reform Addendum
• NCAP Comments to HHS on Interagency Council on Economic Mobility