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April 2018 Newsletter
Advancing Racial Health Equity


Achieving Health Equity  
Health equity can be achieved when everyone has equitable access to opportunity, resources, and power. We are privileged to work in San Mateo County that is a leader in health outcomes in the state. But we also know that Get Healthy SMC has much work to do to ensure every resident can live a healthier life. Not every sector of our population enjoys optimal health outcomes in our county. In our county, the infant mortality rate for Blacks is 14.5 per 1,000 live births which is over 6 times higher compared to all race/ethnicities based on data from 2013 to 2015. We will truly maximize community health when we can address racial and ethnic inequities in accessing quality schools and jobs, healthy housing and food. In this month’s newsletter, we highlight some of the work that Get Healthy SMC is doing to move us closer to our goal of ensuring everyone can live longer and healthier lives.

NEW! Check out our Data Portal 2.0 
Using data to explore why people in some places live longer and have more opportunities to be healthy can help us identify what is working and what can be improved. New data can be found in the updated data portal, which has new interactive maps and charts in every Get Healthy SMC priority area – Healthy HousingHealthy NeighborhoodsHealthy SchoolsHealthy Economy, and Demographics. Our team will be hosting a webinar in June on how to use this data to inform policies and strategies that will help us reduce health disparities and Inequities. Stay tuned for details! Also, look out for Healthy Cities SMC, a profile on each city, town, and unincorporated jurisdiction that can help us understand why some places might be healthier than others. We are planning to release the profiles in May. Please let us know if you have any questions regarding the data portal. Email: We hope you’ll find this to be a useful tool for your work!

Community Collaboration for Children’s Success Webpages are Live!
We are very excited to announce our Community Collaboration for Children’s Success initiative webpages! Visit the site to learn more about CCCS, understand the data we used to identify priority areas for the initiative, and understand more about the framework guiding CCCS. We also provide answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

Ready to Serve Your Community as an EMT? 
Applications are open for the Summer Emergency Medical Services Corps cohort! San Mateo County young men of color between the ages of 18 and 26 are invited to apply. Participants will receive a $5,000 student grant to complete the training and a potential job opportunity with local employers. This is Get Healthy SMC’s second time sponsoring local participation in this renowned training program, which focuses on preparing underrepresented young men of color to enter the health care and emergency medical services fields. By creating economic opportunity for residents most impacted by health inequities, we can build a stronger health workforce and healthier communities. If you have any questions, please contact our Community Health Planner, Grace Streltzov, or 650-573-2935. Apply Today!

Items to include in this newsletter

Health by Numbers

Shorter Life Expectancy for Some

San Mateo County Blacks residents still face a shorter life expectancy at birth compared to other racial/ethnic groups. For example, Black’s life expectancy is nearly 7 years less than Whites.

Staff Perspective Shireen Malekafzali

Reflections from the PolicyLink Equity Summit

Colleagues and Friends – I feel more energized than ever to continue our fight for health equity in San Mateo County! I had the great opportunity to join over 4,000 professionals last week at the 2018 PolicyLink Equity Summit. The Summit shared an inspiring vision of diverse leadership paving the way for a more equitable, healthy and prosperous future. It was clear that the issues of Get Healthy San Mateo County are also the issues of the nation, and we were able to dig into them with other jurisdictions and leaders working on similar issues.


Get Healthy SMC Health and Place Overview Video

“One out of four residents struggle with chronic heart disease. What are the earliest strategies we can adopt that actually prevent the root cause of problems from developing?” says Louise Rogers, Chief of the San Mateo County Health System, in this 


Racial Economic Disparities 

Not everyone in San Mateo County has the resources to live a healthy and prosperous life. Higher incomes and wealth are key determinants of health, and Get Healthy SMC’s Data Portal shows many residents struggle to make ends meet. While local White and Asian households have significantly higher incomes than other races, median income for Black and Latino households in the county is not enough to meet basic needs.


Designing Local State Highways for All Road Users 

Recently, Caltrans concluded outreach on its development of district-wide bike plans. The plan will be a critical tool for local cities as they continue to engage with Caltrans when designing local state highways such as Willow Road and El Camino Real. The plan is a great opportunity to ensure local transportation priorities such as bike connectivity throughout our county are met.


Food Donations Made Easy 

San Mateo County’s Environmental Health Services launched the Safe Surplus Food Donation Program to facilitate the safe donation of surplus food from local businesses, schools, and other local institutions. The website details how food producers can safely store and donate surplus food to help feed those in need. What local restaurant or school can you share this opportunity with? The more that donate, the more who benefit!


Update on Home for All Pilot Programs

The Home for All Outreach & Education Workgroup oversees a Community Engagement pilot program focused on housing issues and solutions in four San Mateo County cities: Burlingame, Half Moon Bay, Redwood City, and Portola Valley. Each city has a different goal for the project, with an overarching idea to close the jobs-housing gap in the county. All of the city pilot projects have public meetings and opportunities for public engagement to expand the conversations on housing.


Cities Make Progress on Affordable Housing and Renters’ Protections 

Redwood City leadership recently voted in two renter protection policies in an effort to provide housing stability for residents living in multi-unit complexes. Moving forward, renters in multi-family units will have the option of a minimum one-year lease. Furthermore, the city’s most vulnerable renters will be provided relocation support in the event that their landlord wants to renovate the unit.


First Countywide Steering Committee Meeting 

On April 18, the Community Collaboration for Children’s Success (CCCS) Countywide Steering Committee convened for the first time and shared their hopes for the project. The Steering Committee includes representatives from the core CCCS agencies—the San Mateo County Health System, Human Services Agency, Probation Department, First Five and County Office of Education—as well as key stakeholders from county agencies, boards and commissions, and select community-based organizations.