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Showing posts from September, 2016

Public Health and Public Housing

Following a discussion with some fellow community members, wondering whether or not a housing division was Section 8 or public housing, I decided to do some research on the subject. Having never used either public housing or Section 8 housing as an adult, I was only somewhat familiar with the criteria and how it worked. What is Public Housing? Public housing is a program designed for individuals of very low income.  Eligibility amounts are determined from state to state.  In Missouri, the very low-income limit for a household of three is $27,150, low income is $43,400, and 30% of the median is $18,100.  In the Kansas City metro, 30% median is $19,700.  That is, all sources of income for the home may not exceed $19,700 in that area for someone to qualify for low-income public housing.  For example, a retail employee who earns $9 per hour and works full time with two children in the home and who also receives $500 a month for child support would have an available income of $24,72

Remembering 9/11: Taking Action Where You Live

On 9/11, many of us reminisce about where we were on that fateful day 15 years ago. I was in my car, driving to my internship at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and I had just started my second year of graduate school. As I sat in my little Pontiac, I could hardly believe what I was hearing. The first tower had been hit by an airplane.  That must have been a mistake.  Maybe it wasn't real. Then, as I parked my car, and arrived to my office, I heard the sounds of radios and televisions playing the tragedy out. People in the office were frantically calling their friends and loved ones in New York, wondering, hoping, and praying they were not at the Twin Towers that day. Later that day, I was walking to class past the now destructed old College of Public Health  building. New construction plans were in progress, and a pile of rubble lay in front of the building.  As I walked by, I thought to myself, this is a small scale of what those in New York City are walking by tod

What is Public Health?

Public health can be found in many aspects of your daily life. When you first wake up in the morning, you may use the bathroom. You flush the toilet and use your city's sanitation system. Sanitation is a public health accomplishment. When you finish using the bathroom, you wash your hands. You do this because you were educated to do so through public health education efforts. Those efforts taught you that washing your hands after using the bathroom helps to reduce the spread of disease. Then, you brush your teeth. The water you use may be fluoridated, as well as your toothpaste, another public health effort. As your pull your milk out of the refrigerator, you notice that it is has a "use by" date on it. That is another public health guideline to keep your food fresh and safe. While eating your breakfast, you sit and read the food label on the box. The food label is another public health effort that lets consumers know what is in their food. After breakfast, you get