Massachusetts Public Health Association

Massachusetts Public Health Association Public Statement

March 17, 2017

The Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Public Health Association (MPHA) announced today the upcoming departure of Executive Director, Rebekah Gewirtz. Rebekah has served as MPHA’s strong executive director for the past three years and has led the organization’s success over that time.  “We are sad to see Rebekah leave but understand that she is going on to lead the organization where she worked tirelessly for nearly nine years, the National Association of Social Workers, MA Chapter,” said MPHA Board President, Jessica Collins. Rebekah’s last day with MPHA will be April 14, 2017. Read More

Job Posting for Mass Budget: Director of Development

Title: Director of Development

Organization: Mass Budget

Brief Summary of Position:

MassBudget is seeking a well-organized, dynamic, and highly effective Director of Development who shares our staff and board’s enthusiasm for, and deep commitment to, our mission: producing non-partisan policy research, analysis, and data-driven recommendations focused on improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults, strengthening our state’s economy, and enhancing the quality of life in Massachusetts. The nature of development work at MassBudget requires an understanding of the policy issues we cover.

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Job Posting for Mass Budget: Senior Policy Analyst

Title: Senior Policy Analyst

Organization: Mass Budget

Brief Summary of Position: MassBudget is seeking a well-organized, dynamic Senior Policy Analyst to lead MassBudget’s work in one or more of the following policy areas: revenue, health care, human services, economic security, and education. The Senior Policy Analyst will have opportunities to work on other state budget and policy issues that relate to improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults in Massachusetts. We’re seeking candidates who have strong policy analysis skills, work well independently and in teams, and can communicate information effectively to diverse audiences. We are also looking for candidates who can take on other leadership responsibilities in the office, such as editing written products or communications and media work.

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Job Posting for AIDS Action Committee: Scattered Site Stabilization Advocate

Title: Scattered Site Stabilization Advocate

Organization: AIDS Action Committee

Brief Summary of Position: AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts is a leader in the fight against HIV/AIDS, advocating at the city, state, and federal levels for fair and effective AIDS policies, conducting cutting edge HIV prevention programs, and providing health and wellness services to people already living with HIV.  The Scattered Site Stabilization Advocate will work under the supervision of the Residential Coordinator provide services and support for HIV+ persons, including coordinating and delivering services to individuals and families moving into and living in scattered-site housing programs.

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Common Health for the Commonwealth: 2017 Report on Preventable Conditions and Social Determinants of Health

Last month, the Massachusetts Health Council released its 2017 Common Health for the Commonwealth: Report on Preventable Conditions and Social Determinants of Health (Report) which identifies key public health areas that require action in order to reduce health inequity and improve overall health in the state. While the report states that Massachusetts is a leader in providing access to health coverage and a low poverty rate, it also illustrates that race and income continue to impact the social determinants of health, creating stark health disparities across the Commonwealth.  To address these disparities, the Report recommends many policy solutions that align with MPHA’s policy priorities, including policies designed to increase access to healthy foods, affordable housing, and fair income and prevent chronic health conditions and substance use disorder. Read More

MPHA Priorities in Promoting Public Health in Implimentation of Recreational Marijuana Law

Last month the Massachusetts legislature created a new joint committee to review legislation related to the bill legalizing recreational marijuana in Massachusetts, which was voted into law last November. MPHA has identified eight issues to be addressed for the legislature to strengthen public health protections in the legislation and to address racial disparities in marijuana enforcement and in the legalized recreational marijuana industry. Our eight priorities are: Read More

The Fight for Healthy Affordable Food

March is National Nutrition Month, an opportunity to highlight the critical role of nutrition in good health. While access to healthy foods is essential for optimal health, many people in Massachusetts suffer from food insecurity, meaning they regularly struggle to have enough food for themselves and their families. Food insecurity can lead to health issues that impede a person’s ability to lead a full life—consequences that also impact health care costs and the economy. In Massachusetts, 1 out of 9 people are food insecure. For children, the numbers are even greater with 1 out of 6 being food insecure. To end food insecurity in Massachusetts it necessary to make healthy foods both affordable and accessible, which is why MPHA is working to close the “SNAP Gap” and to launch the Massachusetts Food Trust. Read More

Ask your Legislators to Support MPHA FY18 Budget Priorities

On January 25, 2017, Governor Baker released his proposed budget for fiscal year 2018. Governor Baker’s budget is now being examined by the legislature, which will debate the budget starting in April.  Now is the time to make sure that essential public health funding is included in the budget!

MPHA is working hard to secure adequate funding for the following priorities:

You can read MPHA’s full budget request letter to the legislature for additional detail, here

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150 Rally to Protect the Prevention Trust, Call for Fast Legislative Action

MPHA Executive Director Rebekah Gewirtz opens kickoff event

More than 150 people rallied last week at the State House to kick off a campaign to protect the first-in-the-nation Prevention and Wellness Trust Fund (PWTF). The rally included patients and community residents served by PWTF, community health workers, community-based service providers, and hospital systems, along with public health and  health care advocates. More than 20 legislators attended, along with many additional legislative staff. Read More

Naloxone Available Statewide at Affordable Prices for all First Responders

On February 23, 2017, Attorney General Maura Healey’s Office released an advisory alerting first responders across the state that affordable Naloxone (also known as Narcan) is available for purchase through the Department of Public Health.

Naloxone is essential to reducing the number of accidental opioid overdoses, which continue to climb in the state.

Read full advisory: AGO Naloxone Advisory Alert.