Network Report


Report: Learning from the Flint Water Crisis — Protecting the Public's Health During a Financial Emergency

A new report released by the Network for Public Health Law and the University of Michigan School of Public Health details why shortcomings in the structure and implementation of laws related to public health, safe drinking water, and emergency financial management failed to stop or mitigate the Flint water crisis. Along with key findings, the report provides recommendations to help prevent similar crises from happening in other communities.


Law and Policy Perspectives:
Leveraging E-Commerce to Fight Food Insecurity

When Amazon purchased Wholefoods for $13.7 billion in 2017, most people probably weren’t thinking about how this might affect low-income Americans living in food deserts. However, thanks to the 2014 Farm Bill, the power of online food retail will soon help increase food access for some of the 41.2 million Americans struggling with food insecurity. 


People, Not Problems: Confronting the Health Justice Implications of Laws that Criminalize Homelessness

The creation and enforcement of municipal laws criminalizing homelessness are escalating in U.S. cities. Much like the criminalization of HIV, the criminalization of homelessness creates additional barriers to housing, health care, employment and other basic human needs, perpetuating the cycle of homelessness and corresponding health inequities.


Public Health Handbook for Communities Under Emergency Management — A Case Study of the Flint Water Crisis

This handbook is intended to help policymakers and practitioners incorporate the lessons learned from the preventable disaster in Flint in order to avert and/or mitigate future crises. Specifically, it provides guidance for implementing several key, overarching recommendations produced through extensive research and analysis.


Emergency Manager Law Primer: Protecting the Public’s Health During Financial Emergencies —Lessons Learned from the Flint Water Crisis

This primer addresses the purpose of emergency manager laws; how they operate; the emergency manager’s powers, duties and limitations; the role of citizens and elected officials while under emergency management; transition after emergency management; and the intersection of emergency manager laws with other laws.


Medicaid and Work Requirements: Has Kentucky Gone Too Far?

February 22, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. EST

Having received federal approval for an 1115 waiver, Kentucky plans to require Medicaid beneficiaries to work in order to receive coverage. The approval also imposes premiums on very low income people and introduces other eligibility requirements that previous Administrations have refused. This webinar will provide legal and policy information on 1115 waivers, Kentucky’s waiver, and details on a lawsuit that is challenging the waiver.    


Legal Technical Assistance Highlight:
Drug Paraphernalia Laws and Alternatives to Syringe Exchange

A requester contacted the Network noting that it is a misdemeanor for pharmacists to sell drug paraphernalia in his state and that there were also no needle exchange sites in the state. Limited access to drug paraphernalia may increase the likelihood that intravenous drug users will share needles, increasing the spread of diseases like HIV and hepatitis C. The requester wanted to know if other states have similar laws and what strategies for harm reduction have been used in those states.

Worth Sharing:
Applications Open in April 2018 for Kresge’s Emerging Leaders in Public Health Initiative

The Kresge Foundation is partnering with the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health (UNC) to recruit and select 20 teams for the third cohort of Emerging Leaders in Public Health (ELPH). ELPH is a leadership development initiative aimed at providing local, governmental public health leaders with the knowledge and skills to lead in today’s changing health care environment. The health officer and a second leader from the same agency team up for an 18-month, action-oriented experience designed to enhance skills and competencies in communications, business planning and leading organizational change.

Job Opportunities:
Legal Director

Health Law Advocates (HLA) is seeking a Legal Director to expand its litigation capacity and mentor and lead its team of dedicated in-house and volunteer lawyers in representing low-income residents. This newly created position is located in Boston.


The California Department of Public Health has three attorney positions with its Office of Legal Services: Attorney—Regulations, Privacy, Special Projects; Attorney—Administration Litigation; and Attorney—Public Health Programs

Public Health Analyst

This position with the Healthy People 2020 Law and Health Policy Project will be placed at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion in Rockville, Maryland. A graduate degree in public health, policy and/or law is required.

Health Policy Fellow

This fellowship is in the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Rockville, Maryland. The fellow will participate in all aspects of the Healthy People program. A graduate degree in public health or health policy is required.

Thank You!
Your interest in the work of the Network is important. Together, we can advance law as a tool to improve public health. Please forward the Report and encourage others to join the Network!

The Network for Public Health Law provides information and technical assistance on issues related to public health. The legal information and assistance provided in this document does not constitute legal advice or legal representation. For legal advice, readers should consult a lawyer in their state.