What is Your City’s ParkScore Ranking? Why Is It Important?


City ParkScore Ranking

Access to green, outdoor spaces can make a huge difference in the lives of marginalized groups, especially Latinos. Parks are essential for public health, climate resilience, and strong connected communities. Still, 100 million people in the US—including 28 million children—don't live in a home that is within a 10-minute walk of a park. The Trust for Public Lands (TPL) knows these facts and is working to improve countless lives through green spaces advocacy — including updating its annual ParkScore rankings. While there has been some movement in making parks more accessible, people of color still face “major disparities” in park access, according to TPL’s rankings. “In the 100 most populated cities, neighborhoods where most residents identify as Black, ...

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Report: Access to Nature Improves Health Outcomes


Access Nature Improves Health Outcomes

After spending most of the last year indoors, Latinos and all Americans are ready to experience the world around us, again — including spending much-needed time outdoors. Not only is the prospect of walking on trails, hiking, camping, and other recreational activities exciting, it will lead to better health outcomes. People’s access to places such as parks, trails, as well as other green spaces is correlated to increased levels of physical activity and other positive health effects, according to new research from Stanford University. “Nature experience boosts memory, attention and creativity as well as happiness, social engagement and a sense of meaning in life,” said Gretchen Daily, senior author on the paper and faculty director of the Stanford Natural Capital Project. ...

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New Program Brief Encourages Trail Use for Latino and Black Youth



Taking a walk or hike can be a great way to get outside and get in some physical activity. But what if your community doesn’t have access to hiking trails? The National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR) created a resource that identifies hiking and walking programs that encourage youth from underserved communities to get outside and hit the trails. The program brief looks specifically at Latino and Black youth, because they are more likely to experience health disparities related to lack of physical activity and are at risk for health complications later in life. What’s in the Program Brief? NCCOR identifies nine programs that successfully reach diverse groups and produce positive health outcomes. The programs meet the following criteria: highlighted on ...

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Cut Toxic Stress with 3 Types of Public Health Prevention Interventions


Cut Toxic Stress with 3 Types of Public Health Prevention Interventions

To reduce the impact of a disease like diabetes, public health leaders usually apply a three-part preventive approach of prevention, early detection, and early intervention. But this preventive approach hasn’t been applied to toxic stress. Toxic stress is the body’s response to prolonged trauma─like abuse or discrimination─with no support. It can harm lifelong mental, physical, and behavioral health, especially for Latinos and others of color. Amid COVID-19, civil unrest, and an economic crisis, we need a public health prevention approach to address toxic stress now more than ever. A new roadmap can help. Dr. Nadine Burke Harris’ Roadmap for Resilience: The California Surgeon General’s Report on Adverse Childhood Experiences, Toxic Stress, and Health proposes a ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 1/5: How to Start 2021 with a Healthier Lifestyle!


physical activity healthy lifestyle woman walking

Are you making a New Year's resolution for 2021? It might be spending more time outside. It might be quitting smoking. Or you could be trying to eat healthier. What we eat and drink affects our body’s ability to prevent, fight, and recover from infections, like COVID-19. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2020, to tweet about how we can keep our New Year's goals of eating healthier, getting more physical activity inside and outside, and quitting smoking! WHAT: #SaludTues: How to Start 2021 with a Healthier Lifestyle! TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. EST (Noon-1 p.m. CST), Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOSTS: @UsA2_Latinos, @VocesenSalud, @SAresearch, @Wellmedgives, @PublicHealthMap, @MotherToBaby, @Ashorg ...

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Jennifer Rangel: Creating Bilingual Cartoons to Teach Zoning 101


Jennifer Rangel creates animated videos to teach residents about zoning

“Ever wondered why your neighborhood looks how it does?” Jennifer Rangel once asked herself this question. To find an answer, Rangel got a master’s degree in urban planning. Along the way, this Latina planner learned that discriminatory urban planning practices, like the zoning of land, had been used for white advantage for over a century, segregating communities and forging inequities in health and wealth among Latinos and other people of color. Rangel wanted to share what she learned. So she helped create workshops─then bilingual animated videos─to train neighborhood leaders, social workers, and others about zoning and how to get involved in zoning changes. “Understanding zoning is a critical step for residents as they try to undo previous harms and to ...

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9 Amazing Latino Contributions to Urban Space, Presented by James Rojas


James Rojas via CNU.org latino urbanism

Since James Rojas was child, he has been fascinated with urban spaces like streets, sidewalks, plazas, storefronts, yards, and porches. He started noticing how spaces made it easier or harder for families, neighbors, and strangers to interact. For example, his urban space experience got worse when his Latino family was uprooted from their home and expected to conform to how white city planners designed neighborhood streets for cars rather than for social connection. “[Latinos] are a humble, prideful, and creative people that express our memories, needs, and aspirations for working with  our hands and not through language,” Rojas said. “However, there are no planning tools that measure this relationship between the body and space. Therefore, our mobility needs can be ...

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Challenge the Status Quo and Push for Investments in Prevention, Equitable Opportunity for Health and Wealth


Health communities economic prosperity

The status quo for health in America is expensive and failing. Medical care is costly for individuals, communities, businesses, and employers. But the U.S. ranks only 27th in life expectancy out of 35 Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries. It also has the highest prevalence of obesity, with even worse rates among Americans of color. That’s why one of Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams’ priorities is to highlight and reverse inadequate investments in disease prevention and inequitable economic opportunities in our communities. Last year, Adams launched the “Community Health and Economic Prosperity” or “CHEP” initiative. “CHEP is the concept that community health and economic prosperity are inextricably linked,” according to the ...

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Parks Are Smaller, Hotter, More Crowded Where People of Color Live


Equitable parks green spaces latino hispanic size crowding bicycle biking bike trees covid mask

Amid the surging COVID-19 pandemic and one of the hottest summers in world history, public parks are a refuge. But not all parks are created equitably. Parks that serve primarily Latinos and others of color are half the size of parks that serve majority White populations. They are also five times more crowded, with hotter temperatures, according to a new study from The Trust for Public Land. "As cities struggle with extreme heat this summer, parks are one of the best ways for residents to find relief," said Diane Regas, leader of The Trust for Public Land. "We all need and deserve parks—and all of the benefits they provide—all of the time. But during this period of compounded public health emergencies, unequal access to quality parks can be downright dangerous." What Did the ...

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