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A Health Risk that Outweighs Smoking and Obesity

The former Surgeon General of the United States, Dr. Vivek Murthy, points to an epidemic of loneliness, which he says is beneath most of the chronic conditions costing us so much in money and lives. How often is the frequent visitor to the ED looking not just for relief from a medical condition but also relief from loneliness? And the good work that community health workers perform by simply listening to residents who want their voices heard might be more important as the guidance they offer.

The workplace, Murthy says, is a place that could offer similar support, but too often the team building and free-pizza Fridays and happy hours don’t encourage the kind of deep connection we yearn for and suffer without.

You can listen to an interview with Dr. Murthy here, and read his Harvard Business Review cover story here.

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Who decides? A Wellville story in quadrant charts

Perhaps the best way to explain Wellville’s unusual role/methods is in a quadrant chart. Let’s call it the “Who decides?” chart. It visualizes how help is offered to communities by outsiders, including Wellville, who either tell you or ask you what to do or how to do it – or both! The “you” is the community members, in all their glory and variety of needs and capacities. 

Spartanburg City Council acknowledges, apologizes for systemic racism

Last Monday the Spartanburg City Council approved unanimously a “Healing, Reconciling and Unity” resolution, acknowledging “the historical antecedents of systemic racism” and apologizing to residents for “racial injustices and long-lasting inequities that have resulted from those policies.” The unprecedented resolution also enumerates specific actions Council members will take, including to “promote racial equity through all policies approved by City Council” and “support community efforts to amplify concerns about racist policies and practices.”

Anti-Discrimination Law Passes Thanks to Hartford Students

The Hartford City Council passed the CROWN Act, which prohibits the denial of employment and educational opportunities because of hair texture or protective hairstyles including braids, locks, twists or bantu knots. The bill was introduced to the Council by students in Advocacy to Legacy, a nonprofit organization that teaches individuals and communities how to advocate for themselves.

Close the gap: Racial equity is fundamental to our health

There is so much in our hearts and minds following these tumultuous past few months and intense past few days. This is a moment to consider the causes of the consequences that are now on full display. It’s time to call out what led to such health disparities and what will it take to improve outcomes for all.