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Local governments can promote healthy eating and active living in their communities by supporting local farmers' markets. Local farmers' markets provide fresh produce to community residents, support small farmers, serve as community gathering places, and revitalize community centers and downtown areas.
A city thrives when its residents thrive. Yet many families, even though they are employed fulltime, continue to struggle to meet their families' basic needs. Local elected officials across the country have discovered a way to strengthen working families while bringing more federal dollars into the local economy: by connecting eligible workers to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
This initiative prohibits bias-based profiling by officers, which includes using certain personal factors such as race, color, ethnicity, national origin, immigration or citizenship status, socioeconomic status, or other defined characteristics as a basis of suspicion for unlawful activities. The initiative explains the prohibited practice by juxtaposing it with the permitted use of information about the circumstance, relevant to the locality and time frame, that links a person of a certain race, color, ethnicity, etc., to illegal activity. The initiative also authorizes citizens and organizations to file claims of disparate impact or intentional discrimination or against a variety of individuals and agencies.
Almost 22 percent of children are poor. In 2012, over 16 million children in the U.S. were living in poverty according to the official measure, defined as living in families with income under $19,090 for a family of three. This is almost identical to figures for 2011, but an increase of nearly three million and 4 percent over 2007 (the last year before the Great Recession). Children are more likely than adults to be poor.
Anchor institutions are place-based entities such as universities and hospitals that are tied to their surroundings by mission, invested capital, or relationships to customers, employees, and vendors. These local human and economic relationships link institution well-being to that of the community in which it is anchored. Increasingly, anchor institutions across the nation are realizing this interdependence and are expanding their public or nonprofit mission to incorporate what we call an "anchor mission." In other words, they are consciously applying their long-term, place-based economic power, in combination with their human and intellectual resources, to better the long-term welfare of the communities in which they reside.
Chester, Pennsylvania, a small, formerly industrial city located on the Delaware River, not far from Philadelphia, exemplifies the problems and possibilities faced by older manufacturing cities across the United States, especially in the Northeast and Midwest. Chester's problems of poverty, stagnation, and unemployment stem from the late 20th-century decline of an industrial economy in the United States - which in Chester was primarily centered on automobile manufacturing and shipbuilding - and the flight of the more affluent residents to the suburbs. The remaining residents face high poverty, high unemployment, a crumbling infrastructure, lack of services and businesses, and underperforming schools. There is hope, however. Although the Federal Reserve Bank classifies Chester as a "struggling city," Chester also embodies the possibilities in the concept of resilience defined as "the individual and collective capacity to respond to adversity and change." The project of turning Chester around is a work in progress, but Chester is also a community that has taken intentional action "to enhance the personal and collective capacity of its citizens and institutions to respond to and influence the course of social and economic change." In fact, Chester, and one of its key partners in community revitalization, Widener University, can serve as a case study of what building resilience can look like in the face of daunting challenges.
As has been widely reported, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of farmers markets in the United States in the last ten years from some 1,755 markets in 1994 to 4,385 in 2006. Over three million consumers shop weekly at these markets, where an estimated 30,000 small to mid-sized farm operations and food entrepreneurs earn a partial or full living selling their local products. USDA has projected roughly $1 billion in annual consumer spending in urban, suburban and rural farmers markets. This remarkable increase has been made possible because of the groundswell of interest in farmers markets at the community level. Grassroots organizations - churches, downtown associations, chambers of commerce and community food activists - are increasingly becoming market organizers and/or sponsors, and are expanding to new locations and communities. Today, farmers markets vary in size from a few vendors to many hundred, with management ranging from a vendor-volunteer to a professional management team. Farmers markets are located in economically, ethnically and socially diverse neighborhoods and, increasingly, are gearing their efforts toward improving access to fresh food for all community members. This has included a growing number of farmers markets that accept FMNP coupons and EBT/Food Stamps.
Our key substantive finding is that early improvements in child health, academic achievement, and behavior as well as improved parenting can yield sizable economic benefits for adult earnings. This is all the more striking when we recall that our estimates, for the most part, capture only a portion of the effects that early interventions are likely to have. Given data constraints for early achievement, attention, and the home environment we have focused on effects that work through improvements in school achievement in adolescence and that result in gains in one adult outcome, earnings. We have ignored effects that work through other intermediate outcomes, such as behavior and health, including peer effects, as well as effects on other adult outcomes, such as physical health. Moreover, our estimates do not take into account any synergies that might arise from concurrent improvements across more than one domain. If we could measure the full range of effects, the economic payoffs would surely be much larger than those estimated here.
Anchor institutions (often referred to as \"eds and meds\") are place-based enterprises, firmly rooted in their locales. In addition to universities and hospitals, anchors may include cultural institutions (such as museums), health care facilities (such as nursing homes), and municipal governments. Typically, anchors tend to be nonprofit corporations. Because they are rooted in place (unlike for-profit corporations that may relocate for a variety of reasons, such as lower labor costs, more subsidies, or fewer environmental regulations), anchors have, at least in principle, an economic self-interest in helping ensure that the communities in which they are based are safe, vibrant, and healthy.
Bringing a grocery store into an underserved neighborhood not only makes fresh produce and other healthy food more accessible, it can provide livingwage jobs, raise the value of surrounding property, and anchor and attract additional businesses to the neighborhood. A wide range of public, private, and nonprofit organizations work to support projects - like grocery store development - that help build a healthy economy. This guide is designed to help advocates and public health agencies coordinate and leverage tools available through local government and other organizations to bring healthy food options into low-income communities. Economic development refers to a range of activities that help build and sustain a healthy economy.