Jeffco Board of Health, JCPH declare racism a public health crisis

Board says it will take steps to address racial inequities in county public health

Staff Report
Posted 6/18/20

Structural and systematic racism are a public health crisis declared Jefferson County Public Health and the Jefferson County Board of Health in a resolution passed on June 16. According to a …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Username
Password
Log in

Don't have an ID?


Print subscribers

If you're a print subscriber, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one.

Non-subscribers

Click here to see your options for becoming a subscriber.

If you made a voluntary contribution in 2019-2020, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one at no additional charge. VIP Digital Access includes access to all websites and online content.


Our print publications are advertiser supported. For those wishing to access our content online, we have implemented a small charge so we may continue to provide our valued readers and community with unique, high quality local content. Thank you for supporting your local newspaper.

Jeffco Board of Health, JCPH declare racism a public health crisis

Board says it will take steps to address racial inequities in county public health

Posted

Structural and systematic racism are a public health crisis declared Jefferson County Public Health and the Jefferson County Board of Health in a resolution passed on June 16.

According to a statement from the organizations, the resolution is a response not only to the need for action within the Jeffco community, but also an answer to a call-to-action for all institutions, such as public health, to work harder in the fight for equity and justice for all Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian and People of Color.

Jefferson County Board of Health President Greg Deanleau said those on the board have felt a range of emotions in the past few weeks ranging from “anger to grief to the need for change.”

“The convergence of recent events — the novel coronavirus which has disproportionately affected People of Color and further racial injustices — have catalyzed a need for action,” Denleau said. “With this resolution, we are asking JCPH to look at the ways in which public health can have a direct impact on racial equity in Jeffco and make important strides for and with the People of Color in our community. We know that this work is too crucial to delay — injustice has already cost too many lives.”

According to the release, the resolution tasks JCPH with making several efforts that its leadership has committed to. Those efforts include:

Assessing internal policies to ensure racial and ethnic equity

Develop policy platforms which address systemic racism and injustices

Actively engaging people and communities of color affected by disadvantage and poverty to alleviate harmful conditions in which people live, work and age

Enhancing data collection and analyses that produce a justice-informed community health needs assessment and community health improvement plan.

Mark B. Johnson, the Executive Director of JCPH, said JCPH must tackle the issues that affect people's health upstream, including racial and social injustices, and strike at the systems that perpetuate those injustices to build a better, more equitable world for people of color.

“This kind of work is hard, and it means addressing our own culture within the walls of JCPH as well as working authentically with our community to make Jefferson County the best place possible for all its residents,” Johnson said. “But no matter how hard the work may be, it's the right thing to do. At JCPH, we are committed to equity and justice and denounce racism, hatred and discrimination in all its forms.”

Comments

Our Papers

Ad blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an ad blocking plugin in your browser.

The revenue we receive from our advertisers helps make this site possible. We request you whitelist our site.