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Josh McCormack

Digital Content Curator, Salud America! Josh McCormack joined Salud America! and its home base, the Institute for Health Promotion Research at UT Health​ San Antonio, in February 2019. Graduating from Texas A&M University with a BA in English Literature, he has previously worked in journalism and publishing. Josh enjoys reading; some of his favorite authors include Stephen King, Omar El Akkad and J.R.R. Tolkien.​


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Articles by Josh McCormack

Food Insecurity Rocks Communities of Color Amid COVID-19


Latina picking out food fruit at grocery store wearing mask for covid coronavirus

A lack of access to healthy, nutritious foods has harmed countless minorities for years. This problem has only gotten worse during the coronavirus pandemic. One in 10 Black and Latino families struggle with food insecurity, which is being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food, according to a recent report from the Census Bureau. While different nonprofits and businesses have made attempts to help, wide-reaching gaps remain to make significant headway in food disparities. Still, these numbers don't illustrate the actual need in these communities, according to Antonio Santos, co-founder and executive director of the Gage Park Latinx Council in Chicago. "We are seeing families every week, and, unfortunately, the need is not going to go ...

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Kids Eat More Vegetables When Exposed to School Gardens


Kids Vegetables School Gardens

Kids aren’t always eager to eat their broccoli, asparagus, or peas. But community gardens and school gardens can change all that, according to researchers from the University of Texas at Austin who recently found that implementing gardens at schools can positively impact students’ feelings about vegetables. In fact, their data showed that those who took classes in gardening, nutrition and cooking ate an extra half a serving of these foods each day. "A lot of the families in these schools live with food insecurity. They live in food deserts and face a higher risk of childhood obesity and related health issues," Jaimie Davis, the lead author of the paper and an associate professor of nutritional sciences at UT Austin, said. "Teaching kids where their food comes from, how to ...

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Businesses Aim to Help Latinos Suffering Amid COVID-19


Businesses Latinos Suffering COVID-19

As the coronavirus continues to surge across the US, Latinos are also still enduring its worst impacts. While there was a notable lack of support from officials in Washington over the last year, many businesses, as well as their leaders, have stepped in to help those in need. Through charitable donations, some Latinos throughout the country are finally getting the assistance they deserve. This assistance has been a long time coming, according to San Francisco’s Latino Community Foundation (LCF) Vice President of Programs, Masha Chernyak — whose organization will pay forward a $2 million dollar donation to specifically provide support to Latinos. "We have taken that incredible American generosity and given it to a community that has been locked out of philanthropic resources," ...

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Oakland Students Gain Greater Access to Clean Water with Filling Stations


Oakland Water Filling Stations

In Oakland and other California cities, education leaders have launched a new initiative to provide students with clean water through water bottle filling stations in schools. These filling stations aim to provide not only filtered drinking water to students, they also combat unnecessary plastic waste. In the era of Climate Change, these kinds of programs can often be the first step in making wide-sweeping changes in communities. Water bottle filling stations can make a big impact on student health and academics, according to water bottle filling station group, FloWater. “Well-hydrated students have a better chance of performing better in school due to increased focus, improved energy, and added health benefits for the body,” the group writes. “A more sanitary place to fill ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 1/26: The COVID-19 Vaccine


COVID-19 VACCINE

The hope that the coronavirus pandemic could come to an end is alive and well as medical officials begin to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine. Still, there are those who are hesitant about such interventions — including Latinos and other people of color. These concerns, while in some cases valid, could hinder America’s progress in stopping the spread of this deadly disease. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, to tweet about the COVID-19 vaccine, why Latinos can trust it, and how it can help bring about the end of the pandemic. WHAT: #SaludTues: The COVID-19 Vaccine TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. EST (Noon-1 p.m. CST), Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOST: @NursesWhoVax ADDITIONAL HASHTAGS: ...

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Comment Now: Urge Against Pesticide Deregulation!


Against Pesticide Deregulation

Despite the swearing-in of President Joe Biden, a proposed rule from former president Donald Trump is still in the works to further deregulate harmful chemicals in products. This kind of action could lead to health consequences among the workers who use pesticides with the chemical Chlorpyrifos, as well as the communities where those products are used. California already bans the chemical. The only way to ensure protection is to stop this rule before it is approved, according to George Kimbrell, the legal director for The Center for Food Safety. “True to form, the Trump Administration has placed corporate dollars over public health,” he said in a recent statement. “If allowed to stand, its proposal to continue registering this neurotoxic insecticide would cause irreparable ...

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As Vaccines Roll Out, San Antonio Latinos are Hesitant


San Antonio Vaccines Roll Out Latinos Hesitant

In one of America’s most populated Latino cities, some people of color are disinclined to get a COVID-19 vaccine. This hesitation comes in spite of the heavy toll coronavirus has taken on Latinos in this metropolitan area — as well as across the country. Public Health experts—such as Dr. Amelie Ramirez, the director of UT Health San Antonio’s Institute for Health Promotion Research and Salud America!—believe that the best way to solve this problem is community-oriented communication. “I feel that the messenger really needs to be the individual who lives, works and worships in the community with them,” Ramirez told Laura Garcia of the San Antonio Express-News. COVID-19 Vaccinations in San Antonio Countless lives are saved because of vaccines, which are rigorously ...

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More Multifamily Dwellings in California Go Smoke-Free


California Smoke-Free Multifamily

More and more Californians are working toward a tobaccoless future. In the city of Crescent City, Calif., residents will no longer be able to smoke in multi-unit housing. A new ordinance, recently passed by the City Council, aims to reduce the harmful toxins non-smokers face when facing secondhand smoke inside their apartments or condos. The city joins a list of over 60 other California cities with similar policies. Secondhand smoke is linked to cancer and heart disease. There is even data to suggest that some forms of exposure are more harmful than other, such as sidestream exposure — a mix of mainstream smoke, the smoke exhaled out by a smoker, and sidestream smoke from the burning tobacco product. “[Sidestream] smoke has higher concentrations of cancer-causing agents ...

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Texas Latinos Urge for Equity in COVID-19 Vaccinations


Texas Latinos Equity COVID-19 Vaccinations

Despite experiencing some of COVID-19’s worst impacts, Latinos struggle to get a vaccination — especially in Austin. This comes at a time when many from communities of color are already uncertain in the first place. There are higher rates of Blacks and Latinos who report hesitancy about obtaining a COVID-19 vaccination, according to the COVID Collaborative. This kind of information is exactly why those ethnic groups need to be prioritized in the vaccine rollout, according to the Austin Latino Coalition. "Due to the historical discrimination that has often posed barriers to economic advancement, lack of access to health care, food and other systemic inequities that still exist today, Latinos, African-Americans, and low-income communities have borne the brunt of the COVID-19 ...

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