Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Advocacy in action

This morning, APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin took a short break from his busy Annual Meeting schedule to lend APHA's support to a key piece of public health legislation.

Standing on the grounds of the Capitol building along with members of Congress and fellow public health advocates, Benjamin reaffirmed APHA's commitment to the Climate Change Health Protection and Promotion Act. Introduced today by Rep. Lois Capps, D-Calif., the legislation calls for developing a national strategic plan that will equip public health agencies with the tools to prepare for, identify and respond to the health threats of climate change. In addition to supporting the bill, APHA was also involved in developing its language.

"Climate change poses a real and present health threat for our country today," Benjamin said in an APHA news release. "It can affect the air we breathe and the water we drink. It also can severely threaten our nation's food supply. If left unaddressed, climate change could exact an enormous toll on communities across the nation. The bill introduced today would send a real lifeline to public health officials who are on the frontlines of protecting our health, preventing disease and keeping families safe."

If you want to take action on behalf of the Climate Change Health Protection and Promotion Act, call the U.S. House of Representatives switchboard at 202-225-3121 to connect with your member of Congress and urge them to sponsor this bill. For more info on climate change and health or to download a free copy of APHA's new publication, "Climate Change: Mastering the Public Health Role," visit

Above, APHA's Georges Benjamin speaks at a Wednesday morning news conference in front of the Capitol in support of the Climate Change Health Protection and Promotion Act. Behind him is Rep. Lois Capps, D-Calif., and Jeff Levi, executive director of Trust for America's Health. Photo courtesy Don Hoppert

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