Page 1

B L A C K

EQ UI TY 01

EDITION

WRITTEN BY

MEMBERS OF THE COALITION

WWW.BLACKEQUITYPGH.ORG


“Almost 50 years later, Joe Biden is president and Kamala Harris — a Black, Southeast Asian woman, is Vice President. Biden has indicated that racial equity will be a core focus of his presidency. Ford reminded the country of the neglected accomplishments of Black people while Biden has brought Black talent to his inner circle. Beyond the addition of Harris, Lloyd Austin, Marcia Fudge and Susan Rice have joined his cabinet. Most recently, his executive order on racial equity commits the federal government to strive to “advance equity for all throughout our federal policies and institutions.” By Malia Lazu February 26, 2021


Content 01

HOW IT STARTED

02

WHO WE ARE

03

FAQ'S

04

THE RESEARCH

05

STRATEGY AND REALITY


BLACK EQUITY 1.1

01/

05

THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH & ALLEGHENY COUNTY PASSED LEGISLATION ON RACISM AS A PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUE

-HOW IT STARTED

The Black Equity Coalition is a group of physicians, researchers, epidemiologists, public health practitioners, social scientists, community funders, academics, activists, government officials, nonprofit and business leaders.

04


05

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

Initially, the BEC convened to ensure an equitable response to the coronavirus pandemic based on socio-economic and culturally relevant data. The BEC’s culturally relevant responses are designed to reduce health inequities and improve health and well-being in general and address the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in vulnerable populations.

Originally, the BEC focused on responding to COVID-19. The Coalition quickly realized that the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on the health, well-being and economic stability of people of color highlighted the need to address institutional racism and structural impediments that continue to plague Black undervalued and underserved communities. Thus, the Black Equity Coalition is committed to working on matters of racial equity beyond the pandemic’s eventual end.


02/

06

05

C O M M U N I T Y L P E N N S Y L V A N I I N J U S T I C E T H C O A L I T I O N ( B

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

E A D E R S F R O M A C R O S S T H E A R E G I O N T A C K L E R O U G H T H E B L A C K E Q U I T Y E C ) .

The BEC consists of seven working groups focusing on critical impact areas. The Huddle Working Group is the leadership core.

The Huddle Working Group is the cross-sector group of physicians, social scientists, researchers, epidemiologists, civic community leaders and philanthropists that work to coordinate the working groups of the coalition, build viable connections, and fundraise to meet community needs. At least one representative of the Huddle group is an active member of each of the other Coalition working groups. The Black Business Support Committee explores how COVID-19 has impacted Small Black Businesses and what their needs are during this period. Efforts include understanding which technical resources are needed for businesses to respond to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Coronavirus Aid Relief, and Economic Stability (CARES) Act and similar opportunities.


07

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

The Community Engagement Committee provides clear and consistent messaging regarding the BEC's efforts and goals through community engagement, direct messaging, capturing community experiences through multi-media platforms. Members of the Community Engagement Committee elevated systemic disparities in vaccine access and led community vaccination events registering which led to thousands of residents to get the vaccine in the early weeks of its' availability.

Currently, this committee is exploring additional partnerships with social service agencies that will magnify the community's perspective on hesitancy to make sound health decisions.

The Policy Committee supports the use of data for policy recommendations and legislation focusing on reducing racial disparities in strategic areas of life, as well as methods to implement racism as a public health crisis legislation. The Education Committee advises school administrators on strategies to mitigate pandemic challenges to learning, especially for students of color. The Education Committee has given feedback to the Pittsburgh Public School District administration on remote learning, alternatives to in-person learning, and connections to community resources.


08

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

The Statewide Coalition Committee represents a coordinated effort across the Pennsylvania Commonwealth to create a research infrastructure dedicated to sharing the emerging data trends and supporting analysis. This team’s focus is on treatment methodologies that curb infection rates, increase salient testing, and foster whole family response practices against comorbidities in Black and Brown communities. The Data Committee collects and studies data. They create data visualizations, submits and monitors data requests for trends in testing, vaccination, and other available information on aggregate and disaggregated bases in support of the Coalition's strategic priorities. Check out covid.createlab.org for more information. The BEC’s Data committee developed a data dashboard and identified racial disparities in COVID-19 outcomes in early May 2020. The committee scraped data from state and local data systems, and later advocated for the public availability of county-level data disaggregated by race and geographic area, from Allegheny County Health Department. The dataset used for this tool. This was a critical factor in our ability to draw granular, interactive insights and recommendations on vulnerability and equity in Allegheny County.


09

03/ H & V A Q

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

05

O W W E R E T H E M O D E R N A P F I Z E R C O V I D - 1 9 A C C I N E S D E V E L O P E D N D T E S T E D S O U I C K L Y ?

W E R E

S T E P S

BEC asked medical professionals to give us easy answers to some leading questions about the vaccines and the facts on how they were developed and tested so quickly.

S K I P P E D ? FACT 1: The development of mRNA vaccines began two decades ago and was tested in mice. This step was NOT SKIPPED. FACT 2: No steps were skipped. The tests were conducted in phases at the same time, rather than one after the other; and outcomes were monitored at each phase.


10

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

FACT 3: The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines authorized by the FDA have very good safety records. The FDA granted emergency use authorization (EUA) because research data from large clinical trials have shown them to be safe and effective.

FACT 4: Over the past months, millions of people in the U.S. have been safely vaccinated. Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson's vaccines have been found to be safe and effective in preventing serious cases of COVID-19. The FDA and CDC continue to carefully monitor each of the authorized COVID-19 vaccines for safety concerns. Adverse events after vaccination can be reported through the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS).

Additional information regarding the benefits and adverse reactions of vaccines can be found at www.contagionlive.com.


04/

05

11

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

PHASES FROM EARLY TESTING TO MONITORING AND EVALUATION


12

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

Black Equity Coalition Releases the Missing our Shot: COVID-19 Vaccine Equity in Allegheny County Report Please reference & download today: Missing Our Shot: COVID-19 Vaccine Equity In Allegheny County Pittsburgh, PA, March 31, 2021 – Black Equity Coalition (BEC) released the Missing our Shot: COVID-19 Vaccine Equity in Allegheny County which sheds the light on the need

for

additional

data,

transparency,

capacity,

infrastructure, and data tracking issues in the Black communities within Allegheny County in regard to the COVID-19 vaccine distribution.

"The disparity between Black and White lives lost during the

pandemic

are

disproportionately

alarming.

A

modified vaccine distribution approach would address this disparity by supplying hard hit communities with greater percentages of vaccinations. Fifty-seven weeks ago, Blacks were dying at 1.5 times the rate of their White counterparts. Today, that number has doubled. It is

critical

that

any

approach

ensures

an

equitable

distribution of vaccines in addition to connecting the needed resources to address the ongoing comorbidity issues

driving

this

disparity.

We

cannot

treat

without the other." - Fred Brown, CEO/President of the Forbes Funds

one


13

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

STATEMENT FROM BLACK EQUITY COALITION DATA WORKING GROUP COMMITTEE

P l e a s e r e fe re n c e & d o w n l oa d t o d ay : B E C S t a t e m e nt _ I n c r e a s i n g Ra t es o f Di s p a r it y i n V a c c i n a t i o n . p d f

This graphic captures the disparity in hospitalization rates by race in Allegheny County during the so-called ‘fourth wave’ in April 2021. Fortunately, the rates have since declined across all racial groups, but the pronounced spike among the Black population over this period is concerning and speaks to the urgent need to close the vaccine gap.


14

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

INCREASING RATES OF DISPARITY IN VACCINATION: DISTRIBUTION THROUGHOUT ALLEGHENY COUNTY The graphic below compares the distribution by race of Allegheny County’s fully vaccinated population compared with the total population of the county. White residents are slightly overrepresented, while Black residents and Asian/Pacific Islander residents are severely underrepresented. It is unclear what is driving the concentration of "Other/Multiracial" vaccine recipients, but this reinforces the need for record-level data to be provided to Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) by the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PA DOH) in a way that allows for local partners (like the BEC) to analyze racial and geographic disparities in more detail. The Black Equity Coalition (BEC) Data Working Group has been advocating for this since March of 2020.


15

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

INCREASING RATES OF DISPARITY IN VACCINATION: DISTRIBUTION THROUGHOUT ALLEGHENY COUNTY Race data is collected separately from Hispanic ethnicity for both the American Community Survey and PA DOH vaccine data. The data are shown in the graphic only includes racial variables, irrespective of ethnicity. Residents of Hispanic ethnicity make up a roughly proportional — though slightly lower — percentage of the fully vaccinated population as they do the population at large in the county (2.1% and 2.3% respectively).


16

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

New Data Tool Tracks Inequities in COVID-19 Testing, Hospitalizations, and Deaths in Allegheny County Surgo Ventures, RAND Corporation, and Black Equity Coalition

launched

an

online

data

tool

to

help

policymakers address inequities in the county’s COVID19

response.

The

policymakers,

tool

was

community

developed

and

to

advocacy

help

groups,

concerned citizens and others to address the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on the health and well-being of people of color.

Allegheny

County

COVID-19

Vulnerability

+

Inequity

Tracker is designed to serve a variety of users including:

Policymakers: Regional policymakers could use the tool to identify municipalities with the greatest need and

expand

COVID-19

vaccination

and

testing

locations. Nationally the tool could be a model for collecting and analyzing relevant data. Community-based

organizations:

administrators

partner

could

vaccination

clinics

experiencing

vulnerability

to

specifically based

Nonprofit

provide

mobile

in

communities

on

neighborhood

need. Residents:

Allegheny

County

residents

can

stay

informed on the state of COVID-19 response in our communities.


17

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

Surgo Ventures, RAND Corporation, and Black Equity Coalition’s data tool is designed to improve responses to COVID-19 and regional recovery. The tracker provides precise

local

create

culturally

interventions

data

for

community

and

targeting

leaders

to

programmatically pandemic-related

swiftly relevant

inequalities

both now and in the future. The tool will be updated weekly with new data. COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted specifically

the

health

those

of

and color

well-being and

has

of

people,

elevated

long

standing health inequities across the United States. This interactive tool assesses the state of COVID-19 testing, cases, and deaths in Allegheny County, and allows users to visualize disparities and opportunities to address inequities in Allegheny County’s COVID-19 response.


18

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

Among its findings:

Black residents in Allegheny County test positive and are hospitalized from COVID-19 at higher rates than White residents COVID-19 positivity rates in Allegheny County as a whole have exceeded WHO thresholds for infection control, with an average test positivity rate of 13%— much higher than the 5% benchmark rate


19

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

About the creators of the Allegheny County COVID-19 Vulnerability + Inequity Tracker (ACCVIT):

Surgo Ventures is a nonprofit organization dedicated to solving health and social problems with precision. We do this by bringing together all the tools available from behavioral

science,

data

science,

and

artificial

intelligence to unlock solutions that will improve and save lives. It works globally: in the United States, the United

Kingdom,

and

in

low-

and

middle-income

countries on issues including COVID-19, tuberculosis, maternal and child health, housing, and more. Surgo Ventures

developed

the

COVID-19

Community

Vulnerability Index in March 2020 to help federal, state and local leaders target vulnerable communities with more informed and effective interventions. The index— which was inspired by the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index and is featured as a CDC resource—ranks U.S. communities in terms of their vulnerability to COVID-19 based on seven key factors, including socioeconomic status, housing and transportation-related challenges, minority status and languages spoken, epidemiological factors, and more.


20

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

In

a

statement

Dr.

Sema

K.

Sgaier,

CEO

of

Surgo

Ventures and Adjunct Assistant Professor at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, said, “COVID-19 is an exceptional disease, not just because of the speed and extent of its spread, but because of the way it has highlighted and heightened the inequities that exist across the United States, including in Allegheny County. That’s

why

we

developed

the

COVID

Community

Vulnerability Index (CCVI) — to identify the communities impacted most negatively by the virus, so we can better serve those communities who are disproportionately impacted due to their race and ethnicity,”

RAND Corporation is a nonprofit research organization whose mission is to develop solutions to public policy challenges to help make communities throughout the world

safer

prosperous.

and To

more see

secure, the

healthier

tool

in

and

more

action,

visit:

www.rand.org/pubs/tools/TLA1080-1/tool.html

“This tool provides a portrait of the communities in Allegheny County that are most vulnerable to COVID-19 and the racial inequities experienced thus far during the pandemic,” said Evan Peet, a RAND economist who helped create the tool.


21

The

Black

Equity

Coalition

was

able

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

to

incorporate

health equity principles into the development process using a cross-contextual lens. Thus contributing to a more equitable development and dissemination process. "This tool will allow for key stakeholders to act swiftly in creating

culturally

interventions

and

and

programmatically

policies

to

eliminate

relevant COVID-19

inequities,” said Dr. Tiffany Gary-Webb, Black Equity Coalition University

and of

Associate

Professor

Pittsburgh

Graduate

of

Epidemiology

School

of

Health.

Surgo Ventures Contact: Bethany Hardy, bethanyhardy@surgoventures.org, 202-277-3848

Black Equity Coalition Contact: Ayanna A. King, ayanna@blackequitypgh.org, (412) 609-4481

Public


22

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

05/ T H E

05

B E C I S A S K I N G P I T T S B U R G H C O M M U N I T Y :

D I D Y O U D E C I D E T O T H E V A C C I N E ? W H Y W H Y N O T ?

O U R

G E T O R

T E L L U S Y O U R O P I N I O N U S I N G T H I S S U R V E Y : B E C C O M M U N I T Y V O I C E S U R V E Y

For further details please contact: www.blackequitypgh.org www.facebook.com/blackequitypgh


23

BLACK EQUITY 1.1

N A T I O N A L N E I G H B O R H O O D I N D I C A T O R S P A R T N E R S H I P G . T H O M A S K I N G S L E Y I M P A C T A W A R D

01

B C D R 1 T C A C

L A C K E Q U I T Y O A L I T I O N E P L O Y S D A T A T O E D U C E C O V I D 9 ' S I M P A C T O N H E B L A C K O M M U N I T Y I N L L E G H E N Y O U N T Y | N N I P

03

In 2016 during NNIP's 20th

Harnessing interdisciplinary

anniversary year, the network

expertise and perspectives, the

introduced two new annual

Black Equity Coalition (BEC) in

awards to recognize NNIP

Pittsburgh successfully used data

Partners who have made

to advocate for programs and

exceptional contributions to

policies to decrease racial

both NNIP and their local

disparities in COVID-19 response

communities.

and created a forum to tackle other health inequities.

B E C P A N E L D I S C U S S I O N : C O M M O N W E A L T H ' S A C T I N G P H Y S I C I A N G E N E R A L , D R . D E N I S E A . J O H N S O N M . D . ( 1 5 J U N E 2 0 2 1 )

02

Profile for UrbanKind Institute

Black Equity 1.1: Black Equity Coalition Newsletter, written by members of the BEC  

We invite you to enjoy volume 1, version 1, of our Black Equity Coalition newsletter! To learn more about our work, visit us online at www.b...

Black Equity 1.1: Black Equity Coalition Newsletter, written by members of the BEC  

We invite you to enjoy volume 1, version 1, of our Black Equity Coalition newsletter! To learn more about our work, visit us online at www.b...

Profile for urbankind

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded