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Public Health Resolutions for Rural Communities

posted on Wed, Jan 31 2018 10:35 am by Jill Krueger

A policy analyst for a local health district contacted the Network about rural county health resolutions. A local board of health wished to adopt a resolution declaring their commitment to preserve and support the health of their constituents and the analyst was interested in reviewing similar resolutions drafted by other communities.

Reviewing examples (whether of actual resolutions passed by other rural counties or models developed to be adapted to the unique circumstances of a particular county) is an excellent way for local boards of health and local governments to benefit from the knowledge and experience of other rural communities and public health leaders. In the course of research to collect sample resolutions, several categories of resolution emerged and are outlined below.

The Network did not seek to create an exhaustive list of relevant rural public health resolutions. If you are aware of or involved with innovative, effective rural public health resolutions, please let us know

Health in All Policies

Health in All Policies resolution, Caswell County, North Carolina

Announces that the county is following a NACCHO recommendation to adopt a Health in All Policies approach, and will change its policy-making process to ensure that policies made outside of healthcare systems have a positive or neutral effect on the determinants of health. (See also, this NACCHO fact sheet.)

Model Health in All Policies resolution, created by ChangeLab Solutions

This model resolution is intended to help cities and counties express their commitment to include considerations of health, wellness, sustainability, and equity into decisions made by all sectors of local government.

Addressing Rural Child Poverty

Rural Impact County Challenge to Combat Rural Child Poverty, created by National Association of Counties

Features a sample resolution for counties to announce their intention to convene a multisector collaborative effort to reduce the number of children and families in rural areas living in poverty through planning and research-based interventions. Areas of potential focus include early childhood education, nutrition, workforce development, and health and human services. An evaluation of the demonstration project includes lessons learned during implementation.

Ouray County (Colo.) adoption of NACo Rural Childhood Poverty Resolution

Community Health Improvement

Lumpkin County (Georgia) resolution in support of Community Healthcare Partnership grant application

Resolution in support of a grant application to improve rural health equity.

Healthy Eating and Active Living

City of Eagan (Minn.) resolution declaring Eagan to be a healthy eating and active living community

Declares that the City will seek opportunities and establish mechanisms to support individual, community and environmental efforts to improve the public’s health by encouraging the development and implementation of policies and practices that support and promote healthy eating and active living among citizens in the City of Eagan (not a rural community, but has served as a model in Minnesota).

Sample Resolution to create a food council, prepared by the Public Health Law Center

A resolution to establish a council of stakeholders to make policy recommendations to improve the local food system.

Jefferson County (Kansas) food council resolution

Tobacco Control

Local government smoke-free implementation toolkit, board of health resolution on the prohibition of smoking or all tobacco use in county buildings, in county vehicles, on county grounds, and in public places, created by North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services

Sample resolution to support adoption of local ordinances to prohibit smoking and use of other tobacco products in specified locations.

Sample resolution supporting a minimum legal sales age of 21 for tobacco products, created by the Tobacco Control Legal Consortium

Expresses support for a state or local government to adopt a minimum legal sales age of 21 for tobacco products.

Environmental Health

King County (Wash.) resolution for safe drinking and surface water

Calls for county-wide collaboration to address water pollution and oversee proper monitoring, maintenance and improvement of septic systems.

Sustain Rural Wisconsin Network Sample Resolution in Support of a State-wide CAFO Moratorium

Declares support for a moratorium on building, placement, or expansion of existing industrial confined animal feeding operations within the state.

Mental Health

Bonneville County (Idaho) resolution to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in jails

Adopts a resolution supported by the Stepping Up Initiative of the Council of State Governments Justice Center, National Association of Counties, and the American Psychiatric Association Foundation. The resolution seeks to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in jails.


Network attorneys are available to answer questions on this and other public health topics at no cost to you, and can assist you in using law to advance your public health initiatives. Contact a Network Attorney in your area for more information.

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.