By Jaleah Rutledge
Tuskegee University Class of 2018

Each year in April, the Office of Minority Health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services celebrates National Minority Health Month to raise awareness and promote information about health disparities that affect racial and ethnic minorities. This month long observance started in 1915 when Booker T. Washington, founding principal of Tuskegee Institute (today historic Tuskegee University) initiated the National Negro Health Week. Dr. Booker T. Washington affirmed, “Without health and long life, all else fails.”  He was persistent and encouraged the participation of a variety of organizations such as churches, schools, professional associations and local health departments. During the 20th century in April of 1915, National Negro Health Week emerged as a dominant force on the national level in raising awareness about the social determinants of health within the African American population. The goal was to create a collaboration among stakeholders, health care providers, and across public and private sectors to improve the well-being and health of African Americans who were descendants of slaves and had experienced poor or no health care in particular. Sandra Crouse Quinn and Stephen Thomas wrote a thought-provoking, informative account of the historic health awareness week in the 2001 publication of Minority Health Today that can be read here in its entirety. National Negro Improvement Health Week evolved and became the impetus for National Minority Health Month which raises health awareness about all people of color in the United States.

Today in the 21st century, the Office of Minority Health focuses on a specific theme each year during National Minority Health Month. The theme last year in 2016 was “Accelerating Health Equity for the Nation,” which conveyed a sense of urgency and dedication towards advancing the United States to achieve health equity.

This year the theme is “Bridging Health Equity Across Communities”. This year the activities included a twitter town hall #Bridge2Health that was hosted on April 12th, at 1PM EST. On April 25, 2017, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities is hosting a twitter chat from 2p-3pm EST. The Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health will also present the annual Thunderclap to raise awareness on minority health and health disparities via a variety of social media outlets. For more information for this year’s Minority Health Month, please check the Office of Minority Health website at https://www.minorityhealth.hhs.gov/omh/ .

“COMMUNITY DAY OF HEALING AND MEMORIAL SERVICE

20TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE U.S. PRESIDENTIAL NATIONAL APOLOGY FOR THE HISTORIC

UNITED STATES PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE SYPHILIS STUDY AT TUSKEGEE”

Tuskegee, Alabama (March 20, 2017) – The Voices for Our Fathers Legacy Foundation (VFOFLF) and the National Center for Bioethics in Research and Health Care at Tuskegee University will sponsor a Community Day of Healing and Memorial Service, from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. CDT, April 3, 2017 at the Chisholm Community Recreational Center, located at 3031 County Road 69 in Tuskegee, Alabama. This commemoration is in honor of the sacrifices of 623 African American men from rural Macon County, Alabama who were victimized and treated as human guinea pigs in the United States Public Health Service Syphilis Study (USPHS) at Tuskegee for forty-years, from 1932-1972. The VFOFLF is the non-profit foundation founded by the descendants of the USPHS Syphilis Study.

The theme for The Community Day of Healing and Memorial Service on April 3, 2017 is “Voices Moving Forward with a Purpose and Action.” This will be the first time the entire community of Macon County will come together since the national apology was given on May 16, 1997. The Community Program, Memorial Service and Solemn Candle Light Ceremony will provide reflections, inspirations and healing offered by descendants of the syphilis study.

“This is the first descendants’ sponsored program to honor the lives of our fathers, grandfathers, great grandfathers and uncles who sacrificed their lives. The occasion will also serve as a reminder, this type of unethical study will never be allowed to happen again. These men without their consent, unknowingly sacrificed their health, some of them lost their lives, while others impacted their families by passing on the disease to them,” said Lillie Head, Co-Chair of the VFOFLF.

The year 2017 is the 20th Anniversary of the 1997 U.S. Presidential Apology when President William Clinton on May 16, 1997, hosted at the White House, at that time the living survivors of the study, Herman Shaw, Fred Simmons, Frederick Moss and Ernest Hendon and their families attended the White House Ceremony. Ernest Hendon was not able to travel to the White House but his brother, North Hendon represented him.

“Each year we honor the men who were in the so- called study and their families during the Month of April which is also National Minority Health. This year the Community Day of Healing will be held on April 3rd through April 7th. The annual Public Health Ethics Intensive Course

(PHEIC) which, is a component of the Annual Commemoration begins on April 4 and ends April 7th. The PHEIC is designed for the family descendants, students, local community residents, undergraduate and graduate students, health professionals, academicians, faith leaders, ethicists, researchers, and community advocates to discuss pressing ethics issues that challenges local, state, regional, national and global communities will end at 12 noon on

April 7th. From 12 noon – 2:00 p.m., the Annual National Apology Commemoration Luncheon will be held at Tuskegee University and Dr. David Satcher 16th U.S. Surgeon General, who actually asked President Clinton for the Apology, will be the keynote luncheon speaker. It is the National Center for Bioethics in Research and Health Care’s distinct privilege and honor to collaborate with the descendants family members of the men who were in the study,” emphasized, Rueben C. Warren, DDS, MPH, DrP.H., MDIV, Professor and Director of the National Center for Bioethics at Tuskegee University.

The Voices for Our Fathers Legacy Foundation will also pay a lasting and sustaining tribute to the legacy of the men who were in the study. The Foundation will give (6) $500.00 scholarships to under graduate and graduate student descendants this year as the VFOFLC Moves Forward, bringing forth good deeds through education. A $3000.00 Award from the Henrietta Lacks Foundation helped to provide the necessary funds for these scholarships. To be eligible for a Voices for Our Fathers Legacy Scholarship, an applicant, must be a descendant of one the participants in the United States Public Health Service Syphilis Study conducted in Macon County/Tuskegee, Alabama. Applicants must have a 3.0 average or better on a 4.0 scale, must be graduating high school senior or a student in an accredited college or university pursing a degree in health-related fields. Applicants must complete the scholarship application and present in writing a need for financial assistance. Scholarship recipients will be announced in the spring of 2017. Application deadline is March 25, 2017.

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Voices for Our Fathers Legacy Foundation (VFOFLF) is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization established in the Spring of 2014 at the Annual 1997 U.S. Presidential Apology Commemoration which is sponsored by the National Center of Bioethics in Research and Health Care at Tuskegee University. The Foundation is committed to transforming the legacy of the infamous unethical study of the United States Public Health Service Syphilis Study at Tuskegee. The VFOFLF members are descendants of the men who were in the study and supporters of the foundation.

The National Center for Bioethics in Research and Health Care at Tuskegee University (http://tuskegeebioethics.org/) is the only U.S. Presidential mandated bioethics center in the United States.

The Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice at Brown University invites applications for a one-year position (2017-2018) as the Ruth J. Simmons Postdoctoral Fellow in Slavery and Justice.

The Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice (CSSJ) is a scholarly research center with a public humanities mission. Recognizing that racial and chattel slavery were central to the historical formation of the Americas and the modern world, the CSSJ creates a space for the interdisciplinary study of the historical forms of slavery while also examining how these legacies shape our contemporary world. We are also attentive to contemporary forms of human bondage and injustice. The Center is devoted to interdisciplinary scholarly research around issues of racial slavery, contemporary forms of injustice, as well as freedom.

Applicants should have Ph.D. in any humanities or social science discipline and have received their degree within the last five years (or will obtain a Ph.D. by June 2017) and work on questions concerning the historical formations of slavery in global or comparative terms; issues concerning contemporary forms of indentured servitude; philosophical, historical, and theoretical questions concerning slavery, justice, and freedom.  Consideration will also be given to candidates whose work pays special attention to contemporary issues and legacies of slavery.  Applicants working on questions of gender, contemporary racial formations, public history, and memory are welcome.  The successful applicant will be expected to be an active participant in the Center’s regular brown bag lunch series, and will have the option to teach a course in the semester of his/her choosing.

Search Opens December 15.  Applications received by February 15th will receive full consideration.

Application Instructions

Applicants should apply online at:  apply.interfolio.com/39600

Please include a cover letter, current CV, a writing sample, and three letters of reference.

Qualifications

Applicants should have Ph.D. in any humanities or social science discipline and have received their degree within the last five years (or will obtain a Ph.D. by June 2017) and work on questions concerning the historical formations of slavery in global or comparative terms; issues concerning contemporary forms of indentured servitude; philosophical, historical, and theoretical questions concerning slavery, justice, and freedom.  Consideration will also be given to candidates whose work pays special attention to contemporary issues and legacies of slavery.  Applicants working on questions of gender, contemporary racial formations, public history, and memory are welcome.  The successful applicant will be expected to be an active participant in the Center’s regular brown bag lunch series, and will have the option to teach a course in the semester of his/her choosing.

Application Instructions

Applicants should apply online at:  apply.interfolio.com/39600

Please include a current CV, a writing sample and three letters of reference.

Want to incorporate the latest science in health disparities into your own research?
The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) will host the Health Disparities Research Institute from August 15, 2016, to August 19, 2016. The Institute aims to foster individual research projects of promising scientists and motivated research scholars with the overall goal to stimulate innovative research in the minority health and health disparities sciences. Please forward this message to anyone who may be interested in applying.

What the Health Disparities Research Institute Is: This program provides a unique opportunity for early career researchers, interested in addressing health disparities and minority health research, to learn about the latest science and receive guidance on their own research projects from leaders in the field.

Who Should Apply: Early career investigators, including postdoctoral researchers, research associates and assistant professors, engaged in health disparities and minority health research are encouraged to apply. We seek participants from diverse backgrounds within and outside of academia, such as from community-based and nonprofit organizations.

Cost: There is no cost, but admission is competitive and participants are required to attend all daily sessions. Participants are responsible for arranging their own transportation, room, and board. Limited scholarships will be available to cover travel expenses based on need. Applicants from diverse backgrounds, including underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, who require financial assistance are always encouraged to apply for NIH support.

How to Apply: The online application is now open on the NIMHD website: http://bit.ly/hdinstitute16.

The due date for submitting an application is 5:00pm local time on June 1, 2016.

Application Information: Selection will be based on the following criteria:

Professional experience and educational achievements.
A brief essay (no more than 250 words) addressing interest in the program and outlining objectives for participation in the program
A one-page abstract with specific aims of a proposed research project
One letter of recommendation providing evidence of potential success in minority health and health disparities research
Approximately 60 participants will be accepted and preference will be given to those who demonstrate high potential to incorporate training into their own research.

Program Information: The program will feature lectures, seminars, small group discussions, and sessions with scientific staff from across NIH Institutes and Centers. Lectures and seminars will include the following topics:

Population science and health disparities
Research design and measurement approaches
Intervention science methods
Healthcare disparities and outcomes research
Community-based participatory research
Small group discussions will be tailored to the research interests of the participants. NIH staff will also consult on research strategies and methodologies specific to the participant’s project and how to develop the project into an R01, R21, or K award application.

For additional information, contact the course planning committee at NIMHDHealthDC@mail.nih.gov.

When advocates talk about the advantages of government health care, they often talk about a moral obligation to ensure equal access. Or they describe the immediate health and economic rewards of giving people a way to pay for their care.

Now a novel study presents another argument for the medical safety net, at least for children: Giving them health coverage may boost their future earnings for decades. And the taxes they pay on those higher incomes may help pay the government back for some of its investment.

The study used newly available tax records measured over decades to examine the effects of providing Medicaid insurance to children. Instead of looking at the program’s immediate impact on those children and their families, it followed them once they became adults and began paying federal taxes.

People who had been eligible for Medicaid as children, as a group, earned higher wages and paid higher federal taxes than their peers who were not eligible for the federal-state health insurance program. And the more years they were eligible for the program, the larger the difference in earnings.

“If we examine kids that were eligible for different amounts of Medicaid over the course of their childhood, we see that the ones that were eligible for more Medicaid ended up paying more taxes through income and payroll taxes later in life,” said Amanda Kowalski, an assistant professor of economics at Yale and one of the study’s authors.

The results mean that the government’s investment in the children’s health care may not have cost as much as budget analysts expected. The study, by a team that included economists from the Treasury Department, was able to calculate a return on investment in the form of tax revenue.

View The Entire Article Here

Eduardo Porter
OCTOBER 20, 2015
An Excerpt From NYTimes.com

Does welfare corrupt the poor?

Few ideas are so deeply ingrained in the American popular imagination as the belief that government aid for poor people will just encourage bad behavior.

The proposition is particularly cherished on the conservative end of the spectrum, articulated with verve by Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute, who blamed welfare for everything from higher youth unemployment to increases in “illegitimacy.” His views are shared, to a greater or lesser degree, by Republican politicians like the unsuccessful presidential candidate Mitt Romney and <a href="http://topics.nytimes viagra au canada.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/r/paul_d_ryan/index.html?inline=nyt-per” onclick=”__gaTracker(‘send’, ‘event’, ‘outbound-article’, ‘http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/r/paul_d_ryan/index.html?inline=nyt-per’, ‘Paul Ryan’);” title=”More articles about Paul D. Ryan.”>Paul Ryan, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

But even Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the father of the New Deal, called welfare “a narcotic, a subtle destroyer of the human spirit.” And it was President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, who put an end to “welfare as we know it.”

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