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  • COVID-19

  • Gadarian speaks to Associated Press about mask mandates

    Iowa is among at least eight Republican-led states that have limited the ability of school boards to impose mask mandates. More recently, arguments about masks heated up after federal Judge Robert Pratt blocked enforcement of the mask mandate ban, leading several school boards to require masks in their schools. Shana Gadarian, professor and chair of political science, says it’s important to weigh the motivation of politicians questioning public health measures proven to slow virus spread. "Politicians are trying to win reelection. They’re trying to keep their approval ratings up," she says. Read more in the Associated Press article, "Iowa focuses on masks as coronavirus deaths rise."

    9/23/2021

     

    Garcia discusses structural racism, COVID-19 outcomes in PHP blog

    "The Devastating Toll of Structural Racism," written by Assistant Professor of Sociology Marc Garcia and Ph.D. student Claire Pendergrast, was published in Public Health Post. Garcia and Pendergrast provide an overview of how structural racism is a root cause of adverse COVID-19 outcomes among older Black and Latinx adults and call for "bold policy measures and serious commitment from government leaders to reduce social and economic inequality experienced by Black and Latinx populations."

    9/20/2021

     

    Gadarian speaks to FiveThirtyEight about partisanship, COVID

    Polls and vaccination rates have shown Republicans are less likely to be vaccinated, and more likely to say they don’t plan to get the shot than Democrats. Based on research she and her colleagues have been conducting, Shana Gadarian says there has been a partisan split on all health behaviors (not only the vaccine but also mask wearing, hand washing, visiting one’s doctor) throughout the pandemic. "Partisanship is not the sole determinant, but it is the strongest, most consistent determinant, even controlling for age, education, where people are living, how many COVID-19 cases are in the area," says Gadarian. Read more in the FiveThirtyEight article, "Republicans Aren’t New To The Anti-Vaxx Movement."

    9/14/2021

     

    Landes discusses vaccines for those aiding people with IDD in LAist

    Scott Landes, associate professor of sociology, weighs in on COVID vaccine mandates for in-home health aides in California. "If you've got a caregiver that's right up next to you, all day, it's going to increase the chances that you could get the disease," says Landes. Read more in the LAist article, "People With Developmental Disabilities Want Their Home Health Workers Vaccinated."

    9/14/2021

     

    Reeher talks with The Hill about vaccine refusual in spite of FDA approval

    Professor of Political Science Grant Reeher speaks with The Hill about polarization and entrenched views against COVID vaccination in spite of FDA approval.

    8/26/2021

     

    O'Keefe weighs in on military vaccine mandate in Gray DC piece

    Military leaders recently announced that all 1.3 million active duty service members will be required to be fully vaccinated as soon as mid-September to fight the highly contagious Delta variant. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin says this new requirement is critical to maintaining military readiness. University Professor Sean O’Keefe strongly supports the vaccine mandate. He points to the COVID-19 outbreak aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt early in the pandemic, which sickened 1,200 sailors and killed one. "This virus isn’t discriminatory. It will take out people with unbelievably great health conditions," says O’Keefe. Read more in the Gray DC piece, "Florida Congressman raises concerns with military vaccine mandate."

    8/17/2021

     

    Engelhardt quoted in HousingWire article on pandemic, housing payments

    According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Research Institute for Housing America, fewer households missed rent and mortgage payments in the second quarter of 2021. "The recent rise in COVID-19 cases, and elevated inflationary pressures, could slow economic growth and hiring. These potential headwinds could also impact households still facing hardships," says Professor Gary Engelhardt. "Given the level of government support during the pandemic and the more recent improvements in the economy and labor market, it is quite possible that the observed levels of rental non-payments may be at or close to pre-pandemic levels." Read more in the HousingWire article, "More households paid their rent and mortgage in Q2 2021."

    8/6/2021

     

    Gadarian piece on COVID vaccine, partisanship published on Smerconish

    "Why Trump and the GOP Didn’t Claim Vaccines," co-authored by Professor Shana Kushner Gadarian, was featured on Michael Smerconish's blog. "There is now a large partisan gap between the vaccinated and unvaccinated that is growing over time. Many eligible Americans are choosing not to get vaccinated and increasingly, those who choose to remain unvaccinated and unprotected identify as Republicans and live in Republican counties," writes Gadarian and her co-authors. "There is, in fact, a strong negative correlation across nearly every state in the union between county-level Trump vote share in 2020 and vaccination rates, measured using data maintained by the CDC."

    8/3/2021

     

    Monnat discusses the US drug crisis on CBS News Radio

    Shannon Monnat, associate professor of sociology and Lerner Chair for Public Health Promotion, was interviewed on CBS News Radio's "America: Changed Forever" podcast about drug abuse and the role the COVID-19 pandemic may have played in last year's drug-related deaths. "COVID-19 has really contributed to a perfect storm of factors that have created the worst drug overdose conditions in the history of this country," says Monnat. Her interview begins at 21:54.

    7/28/2021

     

    Montez discusses US life expectancy, COVID pandemic in USA Today

    Life expectancy in the United States declined by a year and a half in 2020, according to government data released Wednesday, the largest on-year drop since World War II. Hispanic and Black populations saw the largest declines. "I really hope that this is a wake-up call for the U.S.," says Jennifer Karas Montez, professor of sociology and Gerald B. Cramer Faculty Scholar in Aging Studies. "We're relying a lot on a medical fix—on vaccines. And I don't think that's enough." Read more in the USA Today article, "US life expectancy decreased by 1.5 years during the pandemic – the largest drop since WWII."

    7/21/2021

     

    Monnat weighs in on record US overdose deaths in AP article

    Overdose deaths soared to a record 93,000 last year in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. government reported Wednesday. That estimate far eclipses the high of about 72,000 drug overdose deaths reached the previous year and amounts to a 29% increase. "What’s really driving the surge in overdoses is this increasingly poisoned drug supply," says Shannon Monnat, associate professor of sociology and Lerner Chair for Public Health Promotion. "Nearly all of this increase is fentanyl contamination in some way. Heroin is contaminated. Cocaine is contaminated. Methamphetamine is contaminated." Read more in the Associated Press article, "US overdose deaths hit record 93,000 in pandemic last year."

    7/15/2021

     

    Lovely discusses India's COVID crisis, US textile imports with NBC

    As the coronavirus pandemic tears across India, forcing garment factories to shut down or work at half capacity to stem new cases, retail suppliers are scrambling to move production to China. While India constitutes a smaller fraction of imports as compared to China, it still plays a significant role in certain sectors which makes it difficult to move supply chains outside the country, says Professor Mary Lovely. "If India dropped off the face of the world, where you would notice an impact is certainly in manufactured goods, textile and mill products and things like cloth and towels," she says. "You don't just move supply chains. They’re not like pins on a map." Read more in the NBC News article, "India's COVID crisis has ripple effects for garment industry worldwide."

    6/3/2021

     

    Sultana explains why climate, COVID crises need feminism in The Hill

    Instead of analyzing the climate change and COVID-19 crises separately, Farhana Sultana, associate professor of geography and the environment, suggests we learn more by looking at how they intersect. "Both climate change and the coronavirus pandemic have uneven, unequal and long-lasting impacts that depend on where you live, who you are, and what you have," says Sultana. "Approaching these crises by centering feminism can help formulate fairer policies and projects that help improve life for everyone." Read more in Sultana's article, "Climate and COVID-19 crises both need feminism – here's why," published in The Hill.

    5/18/2021

     

    Heflin featured in The Well article on material hardship, COVID-19

    A recent Urban Institute survey found that compared with adults whose family employment was unaffected by the pandemic, families who lost jobs during the pandemic were twice as likely to report food insecurity, and nearly three times as likely to report problems paying utility bills, and nearly four times as likely to report problems paying rent or mortgage. "There’s a sense in our affluent world that we don’t need to be so careful at measuring material hardship, but the COVID-19 crisis taught us it’s more prevalent than we thought," says Professor Colleen Heflin. "Material hardship should measure an ability to cover basic needs," she says. Heflin was featured in The Well article, "Material Hardship Can Cause Adverse Health Outcomes in Young Adults."

    4/28/2021

     

    Heflin research on housing insecurity cited in Common Dreams article

    Professor Colleen Heflin's co-authored Lerner Center research brief, "Housing Insecurity During the Coronavirus Response," was cited in the Common Dreams article, "New York to Offer Undocumented Migrants Up to $15,600 in Pandemic Relief." Heflin and co-author Lauryn Quick found that from late April through mid-July, nearly one in five households in New York state and 22% in the New York City metropolitan area reported not being able to afford last month's housing payment.

    4/19/2021

     
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