April 4, 2022
National Public Health Week starts today
MOBILE, Ala. — During the first full week of April each year, the American Public Health Association (APHA) brings together communities across the country to observe National Public Health Week (NPHW). This week is a time to recognize the contributions of public health and highlight issues that are important to improving our nation’s health.
The Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) joins APHA in celebrating the 27th NPHW on April 4-10, 2022. This year’s theme, Public Health is Where You Are, celebrates what we know is true—the places where we are, physically, mentally, and societally affect our health and our lives. Each day during the week has a theme that focuses on the intersections of our lives that affect our health and well-being.
Melissa McKnight, the Senior Program Administrator for MCHD’s Health Equity Office, has submitted the following article to look at today’s theme of “Racism: A Public Health Crisis”:
We know that disparities in health are well-documented between White communities and other communities of color. Of course, the root of the problem is not one of skin color. Black and Hispanic community members are not facing higher death rates from diabetes, heart disease, and COVID-19 compared to White community members because of their race or ethnicity. They are dying at higher rates because of the social inequities caused by systemic racial injustices. The problem is, and always has been, racism. Racism is a public health crisis.
The MCHD Health Equity Office (HEO) wants to address this persistent issue and help create a community where everyone can live their best, healthiest life. To do this, we must address the connection between race and health that is ingrained in our society and structures. Our community has made great strides, yet a great deal of work continues.
With the joint efforts of community leaders, partners, and stakeholders, the MCHD HEO is working to declare Racism a Public Health Crisis. The Office is defining the problem in our community, collecting data on race and health, connecting with partners, and developing a resolution to present to local leaders.
To learn how to get involved, contact the Mobile County Health Department Health Equity Office at 251-405-4535.
This media product was supported by funds made available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Center for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support, under 1 NH75OT000104-01-00. The content of this media product is that of the authors and does not necessarily stand for the official position of or endorsement by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.