Safe Voting During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Public Health Orders and Legal Challenges in Two Jurisdictions

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19Emergency Legal Preparedness and Response

October 31, 2020
by Leila Barraza

The COVID-19 pandemic has created the challenge for states to provide safe conditions for individuals to vote in the upcoming Presidential election. In two southwestern states, public health executive orders (New Mexico) and legal challenges (Arizona) have been seen ahead of the upcoming election related to voting conditions and voter registrations.

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Right to Counsel at Eviction Proceedings: Lawyers Keeping Families at Home

Law & Policy InsightsFood and Housing Insecurity MeasuresFood Safety and SecurityNeighborhood and Built Environment

October 21, 2020
by Kathleen Hoke

In the U.S., criminal defendants have the right to be represented by an attorney and states and jurisdictions must provide an attorney free of charge to defendants who cannot afford one. Advocates have sought the same right for citizens facing civil cases, including evictions. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought light to the eviction crisis, the critical need for housing stability, and the role that lawyers can play in protecting tenants from unlawful and abusive eviction.

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Q&A: Executive Decision Making for COVID-19: Public Health Science through a Political Lens

Law & Policy InsightsPublic Health Advocacy and Decision-Making

October 21, 2020
by Denise Chrysler and Peter D. Jacobson

In this Q&A, Denise Chrysler, director and Peter Jacobson, co-director, of the Network’s Mid-States Region Office, discuss some of the key elements in the chapter they co-authored, Executive Decision Making for COVID-19: Public Health Science through a Political Lens, for the Report.

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Q&A on Racial Equity Throughout Data Integration

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19COVID-19 and Health EquityCOVID-19: Health Data Sharing and PrivacyMechanisms for Advancing Public HealthHealth Information and Data Sharing

October 15, 2020
by Sallie Milam

The Network has partnered with All In Data for Community Health on a series of webinars focused on racial equity and data integration. In this excerpt of a webinar Q&A, Sallie Milam, Deputy Director of the Network’s Mid-States Region, shares her perspective on why racial equity matters and where trust-building can occur in the data life cycle, including her work with Tribal communities.

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Assessing Efforts to Ensure Equitable Access to Broadband Services that Support Public Health

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19 and Health EquityTelehealthTribal HealthMechanisms for Advancing Public HealthRural Health

October 8, 2020
by Betsy Lawton

Today, home broadband service can connect people to a wide range of services that support healthy outcomes; however broadband is one of the most unequal essential services in the United States. Individuals who lack high-speed broadband service at home are unable to access their classrooms, jobs and job opportunities, telehealth services, social supports, civic opportunities, and even disaster relief information.

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Q&A: Access to Care for Individuals with Opioid Use Disorder

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19Harm Reduction Legal ProjectHarm Reduction Legal Project ResourcesSubstance Use Prevention and Harm Reduction

October 6, 2020
by Amy Lieberman and Corey Davis

In this Q&A, Corey Davis, deputy director of the Network’s Southeastern Region Office and director of the Network’s Harm Reduction Legal Project; and Amy Lieberman, senior attorney, for the Network’s Harm Reduction Legal Project, discuss some of the key elements in the chapter they authored, Access to Care for Individuals with Opioid Use Disorder, for the Report.

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Equitable Law and Policy Solutions to Mitigate Health Risks from Climate Change and COVID-19

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19 and Health EquityEnvironment, Climate and HealthNeighborhood and Built Environment

September 23, 2020
by Betsy Lawton, Dawn Hunter and Leila Barraza

As the COVID-19 pandemic persists in the United States, climate change and weather-related health risks, such as hurricanes, wildfires, and extreme heat, will put even greater pressure on the nation’s health and healthcare resources. There are short-term actions that can be taken to protect the health of vulnerable people along with longer-term solutions that can create equitable and resilient communities that can better respond to future disasters.

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Restoring the Right to Vote is a Pathway to Better Health – a Look at Felon Re-enfranchisement and the 2020 Election

Law & Policy InsightsCivic Engagement and VotingMechanisms for Advancing Public Health

September 23, 2020
by Dawn Hunter

Across the U.S., an estimated 6.1 million Americans are denied the right to vote due to disenfranchisement laws. As the 2020 General Election approaches, one of the issues getting attention is the restoration of voting rights to people convicted of felonies. Research shows that restoration of civil rights helps support a transition back into the community and that civic participation is linked to lower recidivism rates among those previously incarcerated. While some states are following a recent trend to restore voting rights, others are continuing efforts to disenfranchise voters.   

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Q&A: Using SNAP to Address Food Insecurity during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Law & Policy InsightsFood and Housing Insecurity MeasuresFood Security

September 10, 2020
by Mathew Swinburne

In this Q&A, the Network’s Mathew Swinburne discusses some of the key elements in the chapter he authored for the recently released report, Assessing Legal Responses to COVID-19, in which he examines how policies are being changed and leveraged to help address the devastating food insecurity associated with the pandemic.

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Struggling in the Shadows: The Mental Anguish of Educational Fraud

Law & Policy InsightsMechanisms for Advancing Health EquityMental Health and Well-Being

September 10, 2020
by April Shaw

Although there has been some attention to the mental health impacts of student loan debt, little attention has been directed towards the harm experienced by those with student loan debt who have been defrauded by for-profit colleges. These individuals have massive debt after pursuing an education that does not afford any of the opportunities typically associated with higher education. The harm they experience is not merely economic—it’s a social harm with deeply damaging impacts on mental health.

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