disproportionate impacts


Clean Air for All? What the EPA’s Ozone Rule Tells Us About Who Air Pollution Laws Leave Behind

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

Today the nation enjoys far cleaner air than it did 50 years ago when the Clean Air Act was signed into law. But it isn’t clean everywhere. In fact, the quality of the air you breathe depends on where you live, and there are huge discrepancies in air quality across states, within cities, and between neighborhoods. Why is this? How can such differences exist when the law is the same across the country? The reasons are many, but one thing is clear: the laws are not enough, and the Trump administration’s new draft rule on ozone provides a telling example of how the Clean Air Act can fail to protect those who need it most. Read more >

haunted by Leonard Cohen/Flickr
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Elvert Barnes/Flickr

“Fattening” the Curve: Funding Equitable Scientific Research After the Pandemic

Barbara Allen, Professor, , UCS

After the pandemic subsides, we need to build reliable knowledge on the ground about successes and failures in “flattening the curve” in the hardest hit communities during the early phase of the pandemic. What social rhythms were disrupted and what suggested behavior modifications were difficult?  Were they related to infrastructure (i.e. running water, transportation), patterns of financial support (i.e. hazardous employment, paydays), extended family living and caregiving, distrust of government, religious commitments, or other culturally specific activities? Read more >

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Tackling Health Disparities in St. Louis

Max Lyon, graduate student, , UCS

Many factors cause disparities in who has access to healthcare, as well as the quality of the care they receive. Health disparities facing St. Louis are not unique to the city but are intensified by two primary factors: division between the city and county, and extreme racial segregation. Having two separate governments operating in the same municipal area means that multiple initiatives may be formed to tackle the same problems, but never communicate or share resources. While some services – such as the sewer district and certain medical centers – are shared, many more function independently,  necessitating that organizations communicate and comply with two sets of legislatures and regulations. Read more >

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The Masked Syndrome: HIV, Health Disparities, and the Two-Pronged Approach

Maral Aghvinian, Ph.D. student, Fordham University, , UCS

“I have to tell you something” he said to my father on the phone. My father could sense immediately the conversation would be pivotal. “Cancer?” my father asked, to which he quietly responded, “Much worse.” He was my mother’s uncle; he was hilarious, hardworking, and passionate. He was also a gay Armenian man, and his sexual orientation was a subject of shame, criticism, and volatility in many cultures like my own. It was 1989, and the public, including my father, knew little about human immunodeficiency virus or HIV. Within days of this phone call, my parents flew to see him. I often think about this moment and my mother’s uncle considering his diagnosis the worst news he could possibly share. I think about the shame he felt and the vulnerability he displayed in sharing his status. This moment of sheer vulnerability and honesty has been shared by over 36 million individuals and their families worldwide. Read more >

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