Advocacy

The Healthy Homes Coalition employs three key strategies to eliminate harmful housing conditions to improve children's health and wellbeing: home visits, education and outreach, and advocacy for change. Our advocacy strategy works at all levels and is highly collaborative.

 

Federal

The Healthy Homes Coalition partners with the National Safe and Healthy Housing Coalition facilitated by the National Center for Healthy Housing.  Through these partnerships, the Healthy Homes Coalition has been active and vocal in sustaining federal appropriations for lead and healthy housing programming through HUD, has responded to cuts in the CDC's childhood lead poisoning program, and has kept an eye on preserving the integrity of the EPA's Renovation, Repair and Painting rule.  Advocacy activities have included meeting with legislators and their staff and mobilizing local partners and constituents for action.

 

State

The Healthy Homes Coalition is an active member of the Michigan Alliance for Lead-Safe Housing, the group that was successful in securing a renewed $1.25 million investment of State dollars into lead hazard control.  Historically the Healthy Homes Coalition has been very active in Lansing, providing testimony to legislators and supporting numerous bills that have been enacted into law to support children's health.  Healthy Homes is also a member of the Michigan Network for Children's Environmental Health.

 

Local

The Healthy Homes Coalition partners with local groups to support sound policy, investment and partnership at the local level.  Most recently, Healthy Homes successfully partnered with numerous organizations to seek an expansion of the City of Grand Rapids rental certification program to include single-family rental homes.  See the report in the Resources section to the right.

 

With Partners

The Healthy Homes Coalition recognizes that solutions come not only from advocating with government, but also in promoting best practices within the non-profit sector.  To that end, the Healthy Homes Coalition works with non-profit organizations working in housing, weatherization, early childhood, healthcare and elsewhere to ensure that direct service strategies are promoting children's health and wellbeing with the utmost efficiency.  We believe that collaboration is a key strategy for the non-profit sector to maximize the resources so generously entrusted to us by our supporters.

 

Did You Know...

Sprays and foggers only kill 5% of pest populations and leave poisonous chemicals around the home.

Resources

MDHHS Healthy Homes Statewide Strategic Plan(2.9 MB)

State of Michigan plan for promoting healthy housing. Focuses on lead poisoning, asthma, unintentional injury, and lung cancer. Published in 2012.

MacArthur Foundation "How Housing Matters" Research Brief(171 KB)

Poor Quality Housing Is Tied to Children’s Emotional and Behavioral Problems

Making the Invisible Visible

What the Eyes Don't See is the title of Flint heroine Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha’s book about the Flint water crisis. It’s an appropriate title for a book where behind the scenes dealing resulted in thousands of children ingesting lead through their drinking water. However, it's also an accurate statement when it comes to children being poisoned by lead in communities like Grand Rapids that have long had safe drinking water.

We need to be able to see lead. The technology to measure lead in the environment has existed for decades.  This technology needs to be used to stop kids from hurting. Learn five specific ways to make invisible lead hazards visible.

 


Good Process + Great People = Healthy Kids

Did you know that the Healthy Homes Coalition is the number one source of referrals for the Get the Lead Out!  home repair program? It’s no surprise given the expert work of Jackie Hernandez, our Community Connections Coordinator.  

Executive Director Paul Haan will tell you it is Jackie Hernandez, our Community Connections Coordinator, is making it happen. “Jackie is unapologetic in her passion for helping kids and families succeed. Whether it’s her role as a Godfrey Lee school board member or her work at Healthy Homes, Jackie is 100% prepared to take action for her community!”


Healthy Homes in the News

Parents, a Healthy Homes Coalition board member, and staff were all featured on a Michigan Radio news story. We are sharing it here in case you missed it.

In the words of one of Healthy Homes’ newest board members, grandparent Lisa Matthews, "“People think (lead) is a small problem, but it’s a very big problem. I know it takes time to do something about it … I’m just sayin’ what are we going to do now?”

Healthy Homes is eager to begin working with the City and community partners to implement the solutions recommended in this report.