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When is neutrality not enough?

Minnesota made national headlines recently regarding the Anoka-Hennepin county school district’s policy on bullying. The New York Times reported that civil right lawsuits and investigations are currently underway to address complaints of harassment of gay students and teachers’ responses. The district’s current policy is to remain neutral and avoid conversations on sexual diversity. The lawsuit […]

Our prenatal prospects: some thoughts

The “new” science of fetal orgins, as a  New York Times column by Nicholas Kristof describes, draws substantial correlations between many diseases (autism, schizophrenia, even obesity) and an infant’s uterine environment. Although research remains mixed, much of it indicates that life before birth has a substantial impact on later life course. (FYI: Barker and colleagues were […]

A new “culture of poverty”: recent research from sociology

An article in this past week’s New York Times explores the scholarly refashioning of America’s “culture of poverty,” a concept popularized by Daniel Patrick Moynihan in his infamous 1965 report, “The Negro Family: The Case For National Action.”  As detailed elsewhere, Moynihan noted some disturbing trends among poor black Americans: fewer sustained marriages, a related […]

Increasing poverty, decreasing health coverage: new Census Report findings

The recently released (9/16/2010) 2009 Census Report found striking evidence of our ongoing Great Recession: An increase in the nation’s poverty rate to 14.3% — according to the press release, “the second statistically significant annual increase in the poverty rate since 2004” and the highest percentage of total poverty since 1994. That’s 44 million individuals, […]

Public health in Alaska: some thoughts

Greetings, MCH readers! Laura Andersen here, a master’s student at the University of Minnesota’s Maternal and Child Health program. I’m writing you from Alaska, where I am currently about halfway through one of the most interesting internships I’ve ever held – at the State of Alaska’s Section of Women’s, Children’s, and Family Health. Alaska is […]

AHRQ profiles Aqui para Ti

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) recently profiled Minneapolis-based healthcare clinic Aqui para Ti as part of their “Innovations Exchange” feature online. Aqui para Ti (“Here for you”) has provided a full range of services to Latino adolescents and their families–including medical care, health education, and referrals–since 2002. As AHRQ notes, a 2009  […]

Is Inequality Making Us Sick? Unnatural Causes – Free screening at UMN April 29, 2010

FACT: The average U.S. life expectancy, at 78.2 years, remains far below that of other developed nations. FACT: Even after adjusting for behaviors and access to health care, middle-class Americans live an average of three fewer years than their upper-class counterparts. FACT: African Americans, Native Americans, and Pacific Islanders have consistently poorer health outcomes than […]