Los Angeles County communities have implemented a variety of shared use arrangements to promote physical activity among residents who live near schools. However, little has been documented or is presently known about the strengths and limitations of these legal arrangements for achieving this goal. This legal analysis addresses a gap in public health practice. A public health law analysis was conducted to review 20 shared used agreements implemented in Los Angeles County during 2010- 2014.
From 2013 to 2014, researchers conducted 47 semi-structured interviews with school and district administrators in Iowa about its 2007 anti-bullying law. Administrators identified many policy implementation challenges related to funding and staff, prevention programs, applying the law’s bullying definition in investigations, and understanding the school’s jurisdiction for policy enforcement. They also raised contextual barriers to implementation, like media portrayals of bullying and parental attitudes.
This study examined the extent of public awareness and use of school-based physical activity resources in Los Angeles County. Findings suggest that while a large percentage (57.7%) of people have access to school-based physical activity resources, only a portion (30.3%) use them.
This study concludes that shared-use agreements that include legal clauses to address school concerns about factors such as vandalism, staffing and funding represent a promising strategy for increasing physical activity opportunities in under-resourced neighborhoods where the prevalence of obesity is high.
Zoning laws that mix residential units with commercial and public/civic destinations have the potential to increase walkability. This study finds that significant relationships exist between the range and precision with which the zoning ordinances have been written and the mixture of walking destinations that result within the areas.
A variety of laws and legislatively enabled regulations attempt to reduce sodium in the food supply, including lowering the amount of salt in foods served in schools and child care facilities or purchased by state-regulated elder and health care facilities and prisons. Through incentives to develop grocery vendors in areas without them, at least five states provide more low sodium, high potassium fresh fruits and vegetables for our diets.
Increasing concern about obesity and other nutrition-related health problems spurred governments to develop more robust and targeted approaches to foster healthier diet at a population level. Government routinely uses its regulatory power to alter activities and behaviors that influence public health, for example the New York City ban on the use of transfats in restaurants. Yet, in some scenarios, government may more effectively promote positive change through other means, including its purchasing or procurement authority.
“Smart disclosures” are meant to empower consumers to make smart purchasing decisions by providing them with information about products, such as food nutrition labels or automobile fuel economy labels. But Adam Finkel, ScD explains in his Critical Opportunities presentation that these disclosures are often misleading, inaccurate, incomplete or nonexistent. To be valuable tools for consumers, Finkel suggests that smart disclosures would need to be updated and reevaluated for relevance, accuracy and clarity.
Adam Finkel, ScD, University of Pennsylvania proposes four key ways the FDA could amend its labeling regulations. These amendments would allow more information disclosure that enables the public to make more informed decisions about the food they are consuming.