Local and National News

RacismPublicHealthCrisis States are calling racism a public health crisis. Here's what that means by Harmeet Kaur and Skylar Mitchell, CNN. "With Covid-19, the US is experiencing its worst public health crisis in a generation. But that same crisis is prompting leaders to take note of another emergency, one that has been ongoing for centuries: Racism."

White Supremacy in Orange County is real and becoming more overt by Anna Richards. "Right here, in  the “Southern Part of Heaven,” where many like to boast of our community’s progressive image, white supremacy is alive and well, and seems to be emboldened by the current national rhetoric that promotes white power and reveres Confederate monuments. Now is the time for all Orange County citizens who abhor these actions to step up!"

Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation. Though I am gone, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe by John Lewis: Mr. Lewis, the civil rights leader who died on July 17, wrote this essay shortly before his death, to be published upon the day of his funeral.

Sam Hyun

Asian-Americans, long used as a racial wedge, are confronting anti-Black racism in their own communities: article from The Boston Globe. “Our freedom is ultimately tied together,” Bewtra added, “and by supporting the community that is most harmed by our [country’s] policies, we actually will all rise up in the process.”

Covid-19 and Health Equity — Time to Think Big: article from the New England Journal of Medicine. "The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the magnitude of U.S. health inequities — which the World Health Organization defines as “avoidable, unfair, or remediable differences” in health. It has also highlighted structural racism — institutions, practices, mores, and policies that differentially allocate resources and opportunities so as to increase inequity among racial groups. Covid-19 mortality rates are more than twice as high in Black, Latinx, and Indigenous populations as in White populations, and the data reveal a strong socioeconomic gradient (https://covidtracking.com/race/dashboard. opens in new tab).1-3 As physicians with diverse identities (Jewish male, Black female, and South Asian American male) whose work focuses on health equity, we are acutely aware that our profession failed when vulnerable people needed us."

Then and Now: Dismantling Systemic Racism for Equity: July 2020 NC Public Health Association E-newsletter. "Although the recent swell of a global pandemic and exposure of the deep-rooted heinous incidents of police brutality have incited protests, triggered a wave of statements, goodwill, and diversity and inclusion efforts across corporate and institutional sectors, it is important to recognize the long-standing grassroots efforts of activists in the US."

CDCletterCDC Employees Call Out Agency's 'Toxic Culture Of Racial Aggressions': article from NPR. "More than 1,200 current employees at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have signed a letter calling for the federal agency to address "ongoing and recurring acts of racism and discrimination" against Black employees, NPR has learned."

Caring for Mental Health in Communities of Color During COVID-19: article from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. "Lack of access to testing, fear of being profiled while wearing face masks, and other issues are increasing toxic stress and straining mental health in communities of color. Learn what one leader is doing about it."

Creating The Healthiest Nation: Advancing Health Equity: Article from American Public Health Association. "The American Public Health Association’s mission is to improve the health of the public and achieve equity in health status for all Americans. Health equity can be defined in many ways. All definitions include a focus on ensuring opportunities for everyone to attain their highest level of health.1-6 To achieve health equity, “Obstacles to health must be removed such as poverty, discrimination, and their consequences, such as powerlessness and lack of access to quality education.”1 Failing to make progress harms us all. The United States ranks 43rd in the world on the health indicator of average life expectancy at birth. Up to a seven year difference in life expectancy exists within the U.S. between racial and ethnic populations.7, 8 In order for the U.S. to become the healthiest nation, we must advance equiListen to Black Voicesty."

Dear white people: Being an ally isn’t always what you think: article from Daily Hampshire Gazette. "White people have played necessary roles in racial justice movements through time, from abolition to the civil rights era of the 1950s and ’60s, said Mark Warren, a professor of public policy and public affairs at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. But “unfortunately, most white people still don’t have any extensive or real experience in multiracial organizations and settings that are led by black people in their lives,” he said. “So now they want to show up as allies, which is terrific, but are coming into that situation with not a lot of experience about how to act.”"

The effects of COVID-19 on the mental health of Indigenous communities: article from Medical News Today. "In the United States, the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting Indigenous communities to a disproportionate degree. In this Special Feature, we bring into focus some of the mental health effects and challenges that Indigenous people face as a result of the pandemic."


Each COVID-19 newsletter has helpful information on local COVID-19 guidance, resources and articles on racism and equity.  All OCHD COVID-19 Newsletters are housed here: https://www.orangecountync.gov/list.aspx?PRVMSG=358