APHA and health advocates met with  Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard’s staff to discuss workforce issues for public health professionals trained outside the U.S. L-R: Debbie Jessup, health legislative assistant for Roybal-Allard; Amanda Bergson-Shilcock, vice president of policy and evaluation for the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians; Nicole Burda, APHA’s deputy director of government relations; Jose Ramon Fernandez Peña, APHA Executive Board vice chair and director of the Welcome Back Initiative; and Araceli Gutierrez, health graduate fellow in Roybal-Allard's office. Photo by APHA.

APHA and other health advocates met with staff from Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard’s office to discuss workforce issues for public health professionals who are trained outside the United States. Photo by APHA.

Strong investments in public health are necessary for the U.S. to create the healthiest nation in one generation. But many public health programs and initiatives are in danger due to funding cuts and lack of congressional support.

That’s why this summer – while Congress is in recess – APHA is encouraging members, Affiliates and other advocates to promote the importance of public health with its annual Public Health ACTion, or PHACT, campaign.

The legislative priorities for this year’s PHACT campaign are protecting public health funding and the Prevention and Public Health Fund, climate change and child nutrition reauthorization. APHA asks you to support PHACT by engaging three primary stakeholders: your members of Congress, the media and the general public. There are many ways to speak out, including:

  • sending an action alert message to your members of Congress;
  • calling your members of Congress and use the action alert message as a phone script;
  • requesting a meeting with your members of Congress or their staff;
  • attending a public forum and asking a question. For example, “Will you oppose funding cuts to public health programs?” Or: “Will you commit to working with your House and Senate colleagues to replace current austerity measures with a balanced approach to deficit reduction?”
  • submitting a letter to the editor or op-ed to your local newspaper. For a template letter or technical assistance, email mediarelations@apha.org; and
  • using social media to bring attention to your PHACT campaign activities.

APHA members are already making their voices heard! Check out APHA Action Board member Cathy Troisi’s op-ed on the importance of public health investments and the Prevention and Public Health Fund, published in the Houston Chronicle.

Visit the APHA’s PHACT campaign page for more information about the campaign, fact sheets on each advocacy priority and state fact sheets with information on how your state ranks on public health funding and health indicators.