Nurses in the Halls of Power

February 6, 2013
1:00 pm US Eastern Time

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Nurses are becoming increasingly engaged in environmental health issues, such as chemical policy reform. They are concerned about preventing diseases of environmental origin but may lack the expertise to effectively advocate for change. Nurses that are both informed about environmental and public health problems and empowered to effectively influence market and government policies can be a powerful force to vastly improve public health.

On this call hosted by CHE-Alaksa, presenters Katie Huffling and Kathy Curtis provided a brief overview of market and government chemical policies currently being considered, and explored how nurses can utilize advocacy tools to advance public health protections.

Featured Speakers

Katie Huffling, RN, MS, CNM is a Certified Nurse-Midwife and is the director of programs at the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments. Ms. Huffling works with nurses and national nursing organizations on a variety of environmental health issues including chemical policy, inclusion of environmental health into nursing education, and sustainable healthcare. She is the author of a number of peer-reviewed articles on environmental health issues as they relate to pregnancy and has developed an environmental health assessment tool used in a number of OB/GYN practices around the country that assesses for exposures in women. Ms. Huffling was a 2011 Reach the Decision Makers fellow at the University of California San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment.

Kathy Curtis is executive director of Clean and Healthy New York, which promotes safer chemicals, a sustainable economy and a healthier world. She has over two decades of experience in the environmental health movement and is a widely recognized national leader. Kathy is on the steering committee of the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments and coordinates ANHE's Policy and Advocacy Workgroup. Kathy leads the Alliance for Toxic-free Fire Safety, working to replace toxic chemical flame retardants with safer methods. She co-coordinates the JustGreen Partnership, a coalition of 50 groups representing a million New Yorkers. Kathy also leads the Coming Clean Collaborative's Policy Workgroup, a forum on local, state, national, international and market policy that protects people from toxic chemicals.