More Cities Are Banning Smoking in Apartment Units


no smoking in apartments in riverside and vallejo california multifamily secondhand smoke

Two more cities have prohibited smoking inside apartment units. On April 26, 2022, Riverside, Calif., city leaders preliminarily approved a ban on smoking in multifamily-housing rental complexes, including individual apartment homes and attached balconies and patios. Latino tenants helped drive the measure. On May 10, 2022, Vallejo, Calif., city leaders banned smoking in multi-unit residences. Bans like these—to reduce exposure to harmful secondhand smoke among apartment and condo tenants—are on the rise. "Upon adoption, Riverside would join at least 167 California cities and counties that have enacted ordinances to restrict smoking in multifamily housing complexes, said Karina Funez, advocacy policy manager for the American Lung Association in California, which has been ...

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Join the Take Down Tobacco National Day of Action!


Take Down Tobacco National Day of Action from Campaign for Tobacco free kids no smoking

How can you stand up to the tobacco industry? On April 1, you can participate in Take Down Tobacco National Day of Action! Take Down Tobacco, a fresh take on Kick Butts Day, is the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids’ signature platform for empowering people to speak out against the tobacco industry. You can: Raise awareness of the problem of tobacco use Encourage youth to pledge reject the tobacco industry’s deceptive marketing and stay tobacco-free Urge leaders to take action to protect kids from tobacco Watch a "roast" of Big Tobacco Plan events or social media with #TakeDownTobacco The team behind Salud America! is working to help young adults quit smoking with Quitxt, our free English or Spanish text-message service that turns your phone into a personal ...

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Latino Congressional Leaders Call for Methane Reform 


Latino Congressional Methane Reform 

Methane gas emissions have been on the rise over the past 15 years, according to recent numbers published by National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration.   Methane can deprive the body of oxygen and cause fatigue, dizziness, convulsions, and even death.   What makes this especially bad news is that 1.81 million Latino Americans live within a half-mile of an oil and gas well, which raises their risk of methane exposure.  This is why 16 members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus are calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to tighten its rules on methane emissions.  “[U]nder the current proposal, operators that calculate lower potential emissions (less than 3 tons per year of methane) could still escape regular leak monitoring. This is problematic ...

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How State and Local Leaders Can Build on the American Rescue Plan to Implement the $1.2 Trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act


American Rescue Plan Implement the $1.2 Trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

In November 2021, Congress passed the $1.2 trillion bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to rebuild roads, expand access to clean drinking water and high-speed internet, and tackle climate change — with priority investments in Latino and other often left-behind communities. Although this bill adds new money to fix some transportation problems, it pours hundreds of billions into the same old highway programs that perpetuate those problems, like auto-dependence and dangerous roads. “Today’s transportation system works extraordinarily well for its original intended purpose, to build a national highway system, but fails to meet the climate, economic recovery, equity, and safety challenges of the present day,” according to the National Association of City ...

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Get Help Quitting Smoking for the Great American Smokeout on Nov. 18!


quitxt for youtube great american smokeout quit smoking

You don’t have to stop smoking in one day. Start with Day 1. On Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, you can join thousands of people who will begin their smoke-free journey with the Great American Smokeout. This annual event from the American Cancer Society encourages smokers to make a plan to stop smoking. Need help? Enroll in Quitxt, a free English or Spanish text-message service that turns your phone into a personal “quit smoking” coach from UT Health San Antonio. To join Quitxt, text “iquit” (for English) or “lodejo” (for Spanish) to 844-332-2058. “For the Great American Smokeout, we’re excited to share Quitxt to provide real-time help with motivation to quit, setting a quit date, handling stress, and much more, all on your phone,” said Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez, ...

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Report: The Relationship between Climate Change and Health Equity


Climate change

Climate change is an ongoing environmental dilemma that threatens the health of all people. Yet, research has shown that certain groups, such as Latinos and other people of color, immigrants, those with a lower socio-economic status, and vulnerable occupational groups are most likely to suffer longer and more severely from climate change. “The effects of climate change add to other longstanding differences among people that result in different health outcomes for communities in the United States,” reported the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. What Is Climate Change? Climate change is defined as a long-term shift in global or regional climate patterns. Long-term alterations in temperature or the typical weather patterns of a certain location can lead to ...

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Jim Morris: A Watchdog for Environmental Health


Jim Morris

Having been in the industry for over 40 years, Jim Morris is no newcomer to journalism. He’s worked at several news organizations across Texas and spent two decades at the Center for Public Integrity, a news nonprofit in Washington, D.C. In August 2021, he started Public Health Watch, a nonprofit investigative news organization that seeks to hold systems accountable and expose threats to the safety and wellbeing of the country. As the Executive Director and Editor-in-Chief of a virtual news organization, Morris faces some challenges. But in the end, it’s worth it to be able to help advocate for workers’ health and expose people to the human stories in public and environmental health. “I'm attracted to those kinds of stories. You can almost always tell a really ...

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Electric Cars: A Vehicle for Environmental Justice


Electric Cars Environmental Justice

The climate crisis is especially impacting Latinos and other people of color. Despite being low contributors to the rate of emissions—toxins that are one of the main issues spurring global warming—they are experiencing worse health outcomes, due to rising temperatures and extreme weather events. This is why advocates have been calling for environmental justice, a strategy to address climate change through a lens that focuses on those who are harmed most. Electric cars are an emerging piece of environmental justice. As more and more electric vehicles hit the market, experts are saying these cars can drive efforts toward environmental justice for people of color. “The electric vehicle transition has great potential to benefit Black and Latino communities, which are ...

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Study: Air Pollution Linked to Childhood Obesity in Latinos


Air Pollution Childhood Obesity Latinos

Latinos suffer from toxic pollution in the air at higher rates than their white peers, and it can lead to many harmful side effects. University of Colorado Boulder researchers just added another side effect to that list: Childhood obesity in those whose mothers were exposed to air pollution during pregnancy. Study authors say their findings reveal air pollution’s disproportionate impact on communities of color — the same communities that suffer a lack of access to healthy food and barriers to safe places for physical activity, which contribute to America’s obesity epidemic. “Higher rates of obesity among certain groups in our society are not simply a byproduct of personal choices like exercise and calories in, calories out. It’s more complicated than that,” said ...

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