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 R. 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 InsightsMental 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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The CDC’s Eviction Moratorium Order Is Unprecedented: What Does It Mean for Tenants and Landlords?

Law & Policy InsightsFood and Housing Insecurity Measures

September 10, 2020
by Kerri McGowan Lowrey

Millions of Americans are at risk of losing their homes in the wake of the pandemic and renters are particularly vulnerable as they are less likely to have the resources to weather financial losses. On September 1, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an unprecedented Agency Order to temporarily halt residential evictions until December 31, 2020. While on its face, the Order is a “win” for public health, legal challenges on statutory and constitutional grounds are almost certain, and implementation will likely present difficulties.

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Protecting the Nation’s Future: COVID-19’s Mental Health Effects on America’s Youth

Law & Policy InsightsCOVID-19COVID-19 and Health EquityMental Health and Well-Being

September 4, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic affects not only people’s physical but also mental health. Adolescents are at a particularly high risk of experiencing negative mental health effects from the pandemic and related social distancing measures. Impacts are likely to have lasting effects on the nation’s youth for years to come. Taking steps to implement and maintain mental health resources now may be the key to diminishing negative mental health outcomes.

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