Network Report
Thursday, July 18, 2019

The Network is pleased to announce Vivian Singletary as the Keynote speaker for the 2019 Public Health Law Summit: Data Sharing to Improve Community Health. Ms. Singletary serves as the director of the Public Health Informatics Institute where she leads efforts to improve health outcomes worldwide by strengthening health practitioners’ abilities to use information effectively. See the full summit schedule

Law and Policy Perspectives:

Connecting Traditions to Wellness: Key Policy Takeaways from the 2019 Tribal Public Health Summit

Tribes across the country are restoring ancient traditions to improve overall wellness of American Indians and Alaska Natives. The recent National Tribal Public Health Summit highlighted these stories and identified the need for law and policy solutions to address a number of critical issues including opioid harm prevention and treatment, access to oral health care, and climate change.


Tick Tock: When Will We See Graphic Warnings on Cigarette Packs?

Although the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act directed the FDA to propose graphic warnings to be required on cigarette packages and advertising by June 2011, cigarette packages and ads in the United States still do not contain graphic warnings. In August 2016, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), along with other public health organizations, filed suit against the FDA seeking to force the Agency to propose graphic warnings as mandated by Congress.


How Public Health Departments and Medical-Legal Partnerships Can Collaborate to Strengthen Community Health Efforts

Medical-legal partnership (MLP) attorneys are ideally situated to identify and define the contours of specific legal issues affecting a community’s health. MLPs can also play an important role in informing, guiding, and effectuating strategic legal changes to improve health at the population level. In addition to working with MLPs on public health law and policy initiatives, there are many additional opportunities for public health departments and MLPs to collaborate on a day-to-day basis.


Report: Smoke Alarm Installation Liability

In an effort to prevent fires and to mitigate their impact, fire departments and other nonprofit safety organizations work to educate communities about the importance of smoke alarms and provide and install smoke alarms in residences. Some fire departments and nonprofit groups have expressed concerns about the risk of liability associated with smoke alarm installation programs. This report examines whether there have been cases in which organizations, local governments, or fire departments have been held liable for damage caused by a fire that occurred after the organization installed smoke alarms.


Legal Strategies to Promote Solar Energy, Public Health, and Climate Adaptation

Increasing solar energy production can reduce public health harms caused by climate change and the combustion of fossil fuels, including increased incidence of asthma and cardiovascular disease, which disproportionately impact low-income communities and communities of color. Solar power can also increase community resilience to natural disasters and other energy interruptions. This resource provides an overview of the legal strategies that have been implemented to promote solar energy use in low-income communities.


Linking and De-identifying State-level Data Sets to Tackle the Opioid Epidemic

July 30, 2:30 - 4:00 p.m. EST

Data can be a powerful tool for developing drug harm reduction policies and programs but the complexities of data sharing and related regulations can prove challenging. Attend this webinar to hear from health departments in Massachusetts and Allegheny County, Pennsylvania and learn about their work to de-identify and link data sets to address the opioid epidemic, as well as their strategies for navigating the legal framework to collect, use, and share data across sectors.

Publications: Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics Public Health Law Conference Supplement

Health Justice - Empowering Public Health and Advancing Health Equity

In October 2018, hundreds of officials, policymakers, lawyers, practitioners and advocates in public health and other sectors from across the country convened in Phoenix, Arizona for the National Public Health Law Conference. Attendees gathered to learn, share, and develop strategies to use law and policy to advance the health of our communities and most vulnerable populations, with health equity as the focus. The recently published symposium edition of JLME is dedicated to examining some of the critical topics discussed at the conference. All of the articles are now available for download.

Worth Sharing:

Becoming Better Messengers: The Public Health Advantage

During politically polarized times, public health leaders must develop more effective messages that appeal to a broader range of people, and also to the new millennial generation who represent the future of the public health workforce. This article, co-authored by the Network’s Southeastern Region Director Gene Matthews, explores how messaging can be used to amplify the “public health advantage.”

Video: What It Means to be a Better Messenger for Health

Effective messaging of public health challenges and interventions is essential to public health practice and especially to implementing public health laws and policies in our current polarized political environment. The Network has joined with a group of attorneys, public health practitioners, advocates and experts in an exploration of how the framework of Moral Foundations Theory can assist public health in these turbulent times. Watch our video to learn what it means to be a better messenger for health.

Job Opportunities:

Program Development Manager

The Network is looking for an energetic, resourceful individual to join our team as Program Development Manager. This position works closely with Network leadership on program planning and grants research and development, and coordinates the activities of Network’s National Advisory Board. A minimum of 5 - 7 years of work-related experience in fundraising, sponsorship, sales or marketing is required; knowledge of public health a plus. This position is based at the Network’s National Office in Edina, Minnesota. All applications will be accepted until the position is filled, but preference will be given to those submitted before July 24.

Director of County Health Rankings & Roadmaps

The University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute (UWPHI) seeks an accomplished leader in community and population health to serve as the Director of County Health Rankings & Roadmaps, a nationally recognized collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and UWPHI. The ideal candidate will have more than 10 years of proven leadership and management experience in the field of population health or a related field, and a PhD, MD, JD, DrPH or other related terminal Master’s degree. Candidates are encouraged to submit materials by July 24, 2019 for the most favorable consideration.

Legislative and Policy Counsel

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK) seeks a Legislative and Policy Counsel to support cutting-edge legal and policy advocacy to bring an end to tobacco-related disease, the nation’s leading cause of preventable death.  The Campaign is the leading policy advocacy organization devoted primarily to countering the lethal influence of the tobacco industry on public policy. Three-five years of legal experience, including legislative drafting and policy analysis, is required.  


The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK) seeks a Paralegal to support cutting-edge legal and policy advocacy to bring an end to tobacco-related disease. The Paralegal will provide support for the Campaign’s litigation activities related to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation and the defense of state and local control tobacco laws.  The Paralegal will also provide support to the Campaign staff as needed on other federal, state, and local issues, including filing lobbying reports.

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 Network 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.