Warren, Pressley Renew Push for Anti-Racism in Health Bill

Sen. Elizabeth Warren

HYANNIS – Massachusetts lawmakers are renewing their push for Congress to pass the Anti-Racism in Public Health Act.

The bill, introduced by United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), would expand federal research and investment into the public health impacts of structural racism and require the federal government to take a public health approach to combating police brutality. 

Pressley said that, currently, COVID-19 is the third leading cause of death for Black Americans, and that police brutality is the sixth leading cause of death. 

“We know that Black folks specifically are more likely to contract, be hospitalized and to die from the coronavirus. And with the deployment of COVID-19 vaccines, our community is less likely to have access due to vaccine redlining, misinformation and racial disparities in life expectancy,” said Pressley. 

The legislation would establish a National Center for Anti-Racism at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that would further develop the research base and knowledge in the science and practice of anti-racism, said the office of Warren. 

Activities the Center would undertake include conducting research, awarding grants, creating at least three regional centers of excellence in anti-racism and educate the public on the public health impacts of structural racism and anti-racist public health interventions. 

The bill would also create a Law Enforcement Violence Prevention Program within the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at the CDC. 

“It is time we start treating structural racism like we would treat any other public health problem or disease: investing in research into its symptoms and causes and finding ways to mitigate its effects,” said Senator Warren in a statement.

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native currently living in Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the CapeCod.com News Center in 2019.

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