188719 Success Stories: Involving Communities to Reduce Health Disparities and other Issues

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 9:25 AM

Laurel Berman, PhD , Brownfields Initiative, Agcy Toxic Sub & Dis Registry, Chicago, IL
Early involvement of public health professionals in the brownfields and land redevelopment process can help redevelopment happen in ways that not only protects community members from exposure to environmental hazards but also creates healthier communities. Frequently when redevelopment happens in communities, it happens with involvement from local planners and developers. Often public health professionals are not included in the initial planning stages of the process. Decisions made concerning brownfields and land redevelopment directly impact the health of communities and health professionals can help planners and developers realize the impact of their development choices and envision plans that maximize the health benefits to a community. Public health professionals can help assess the health status of a community and advocate for redevelopment that helps address some of the communities public health needs. Redevelopment has the power to create jobs, safe housing, green space, retail and medical services. Each redevelopment project can be completed in a way that helps maximize healthy benefits to the community impacted by the redevelopment. Two examples of cases that benefited from early involvement of public health professionals in the redevelopment process will be highlighted. Both of these sites will be discussed as examples of how early involvement of public health professionals can positively impact the health of communities during redevelopment.

Learning Objectives:
1)Identify ways in which public health professionals can benefit community redevelopment. 2) Discuss how redevelopment has occurred to maximize community health.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have over 10 years of experience as an environmental scientist and an environmental educator. I have been a conference planner in the areas of occupational health, environmental education, risk assessment, and brownfields/land reuse sites.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.