Health Equity and Social Justice:
Changing the Narrative to Prevent Injuries and Violence
Thursday, January 29, 2015
2:00 – 3:30pm EST
Richard Hofrichter from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)
and Katherine Schaff from the Alameda County Public Health Department will challenge you to
shift perspective from an emphasis on individual behavior to one which examines the social
and political systems that generate health inequities. The webinar will include concrete examples
of working on underlying social inequities, and a time for questions and discussion among webinar
presenters and participants.
“Slow violence,” as defined by Rob Nixon, is the violence wrought by climate change, toxic drift, deforestation, oil spills, and the environmental aftermath of war that takes place gradually and often invisibly. Similarly, the impact of health inequities can also take place gradually. Recent data demonstrates a staggering and growing degree of social and economic inequality in the U.S. not seen since the Great Depression. Rates of disease and illness for people with low income are worsening across almost all categories and geographic areas in the U.S. As public health professionals, we must question why and how certain communities bear the brunt of illness and premature death.
Richard Hofrichter will explore how racism and class exploitation are fundamental causes of health inequity, and how the dominant public narrative obscures imbalances in political power and serves to limit public health-driven solutions to programs and services instead of widespread social changes.
Katherine Schaff will discuss why the Alameda County Public Health Department (Oakland, CA) is focused on social inequities and health equity, how it promotes health equity through a comprehensive community-centered local policy agenda, and what it took to get there. She will provide an overview of ACPHD’s work, including its Place Matters local policy initiative and other concrete examples of working on underlying social inequities.
NOTE: The live webinar will be recorded and archived in the Safe States Alliance Training Center.
Richard Hofrichter, PhD
Richard Hofrichter, PhD, is Senior Director for Health Equity at the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO). He develops and manages NACCHO’s health equity program aimed at strengthening local public health departments’ capacity to act on the root causes of health inequity. Before coming to NACCHO in 1994, he held positions in a variety of public interest and non-profit organizations in Washington, DC. His publications include Tackling Health Inequities Through Public Health Practice: Theory to Action, 2nd Ed, which he co-edited with ith Rajiv Bhatia.
Katherine Schaff, MPH, DrPH (C)
Katherine Schaff has worked at the Alameda County Public Health Department since 2006. She currently works on the Place Matters local policy initiative (also here), which promotes health equity through a community-centered local policy agenda focused on criminal justice, economics, education, housing, and land use and transportation. Previously, Ms. Schaff supported local health departments through her position at NACCHO in Washington, DC. Katherine is also in the Doctor of Public Health program at UC Berkeley, researching how local health departments can more effectively communicate to policymakers, the media, and the public about health equity.