Public health departments do a lot to keep the public safe from man-made crises, natural disasters, and outbreaks of disease. But as communities continue to grapple with COVID-19, more than half of US states have passed legislation that will undermine public health now and in the future. Act for Public Health is a collaborative effort that aims to protect the authority of public health agencies across the nation.
The ongoing backlash against public health authority is significantly limiting the ability of public health officials to do their job. Public health leaders have experienced personal threats and acts of intimidation. Following public discontentment with life-saving measures, like masking and social distancing, legislative proposals in many states are seeking to inhibit the ability of public health authorities and state governors to respond to the immediate needs of COVID-19, as well as future public health threats. These enacted and proposed laws will certainly harm Americans and increase health inequities.
Act for Public Health is a working group of the Public Health Law Partnership* that is convening to provide law and policy research, analysis, and expertise in support of public health authority. This group of public health organizations and experts, who collectively have decades of experience working in public health law and policy, are joining together to preserve public health authority and infrastructure wherever challenges arise.
Additional partners outside of the working group are helping with strategy, grassroots work, dissemination, and outreach to key audiences.
How can you Act for Public Health? Here are ways you can get involved now:
Join our email list to receive updates on new and upcoming litigation, legislation, events, and resources.
Register for one of the Act for Public Health events to learn more about the project and related issues.
Reach out with any questions or requests for assistance.
Help us spread the word and build a community by including #Act4PublicHealth in your social media engagement.
* The Public Health Law Partnership includes organizations with decades of experience in public health law, authority, and governance, including ChangeLab Solutions; Network for Public Health Law; Public Health Law Center; Center for Public Health Law Research at Temple University; and Public Health Law Watch, which is an initiative of the George Consortium housed at the Center for Health Policy and Law at Northeastern University.