Health Equity Initiative
Berkeley is just like everyplace else in the country with respect to health inequities. The color of your skin, your home address and your income are very good predictors of whether you will have a low birth-weight baby, die from heart disease or stroke, graduate from high school, own a home, or end up in jail. The Public Health Division works to promote health equity in Berkeley.
City of Berkeley Public Health Division
1947 Center Street, Second Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704
Map to Public Health Division
510-981-5300 (Phone) 510-981-5395 (Fax) 510-981-6903 (TDD)
Monday - Friday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Health Inequities in Berkeley
The 2007 City of Berkeley Health Status Report highlights the improvements in health and also the persistent inequities in health that have changed little since prior reports. Some members of our community - especially low-income people and those in racial and ethnic minority groups - suffer poorer health by many measures, but Berkeley is no different than other communities in the County, State, or nation in this respect. These health inequities are the result of multiple factors in our social, economic, and physical environment that impact health directly and promote health risk behaviors. The Berkeley Community and the City of Berkeley have made a serious commitment to address these inequities that result from social and economic forces (such as inequalities in income, educational attainment and structural racism) that are long-standing, and difficult to address at a local level alone.
City of Berkeley Public Health uses the compelling PBS documentary "Unnatural Causes" to build awareness of how social conditions in the U.S. (in neighborhoods, communities, schools, and workplace) profoundly affect our health and longevity - even more than medical care, genes, or behavior.
Health Inequities in the Bay Area
The Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative (BARHII), a collaboration of senior officials, managers and staff from eight health departments in the Bay area, including the City of Berkeley Public Health Division. It brings to light the affects that race and ethnicity, income and our surrounding environment have on our overall health and well being.
Heart 2 Heart Program is an example of a place-based health equity initiative that our Division co-leads in partnership with LifeLong Medical Care.
Public Health Division Partnership with UC Berkeley
Our partnership with UC Berkeley is centered around how students (undergraduate and graduate) and faculty from the School of Public Health (SPH) can contribute to better health in surrounding Berkeley communities. The SPH offers academic credit for students to work with us; we work with about 35-40 students per year as volunteer interns with the Division. The SPH also sponsors summer MPH-level internships for students to work on particular projects that help us achieve health equity. Future plans include pulling together a School of Public Health Faculty Workgroup to work with us to focus their research and student coursework on Berkeley’s health equity initiative. Go to our Volunteers and Internships page for more information on how to apply!
For more information contact:
Kate Clayton, MPH
Chief, Health Promotion