Criminalization of vulnerable populations: Using health impact assessment to reduce impacts on health and equity
Monday, November 4, 2013: 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Immigration enforcement, policing of public spaces, school discipline practices, and incarceration play out everyday in local, state, national, and international venues, with significant impacts to public health. For example, policies to regulate undocumented immigrants, low-income residents, African American youth, and people experiencing mental health issues or substance abuse, often result in their detention and deportation, incarceration, or suspension and expulsion from school and multiple downstream health effects. This session discusses policies that collectively “criminalize” segments of the population. It describes how in the past two years, community advocates, public health agencies, and other U.S. stakeholders applied health impact assessment (HIA) to inform and make recommendations to decision-makers to improve health impacts of the policies, particularly for vulnerable populations. HIAs aim to address the root causes of health problems, encourage collaboration among diverse stakeholders, and provide decision-makers with objective information to understand the impacts of planning and policy decisions on health and health disparities.
In this session, we will hear about HIAs on the following proposals: Development of a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles; policies to fund mental health and substance abuse courts as alternatives to incarceration in Wisconsin; changes to “zero tolerance” school discipline policies in several school districts in California; and federal immigration policy reform.
Session Objectives: Describe HIA examples and outcomes around criminalization policy issues.
Identify how to navigate the practical steps of an HIA.
Demonstrate how different stakeholders have used the HIA process and findings to promote health and justice and to decrease the negative health impacts associated with criminalization.
See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.
Organized by: Community Health Planning and Policy Development
Endorsed by: Ethics SPIG, Medical Care, Public Health Nursing, Socialist Caucus, Asian Pacific Islander Caucus for Public Health, Caucus on Homelessness
Medical (CME), Health Education (CHES), Nursing (CNE), Public Health (CPH)