Received Mar 30; Accepted Mar This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. The epidemic-like rise in the prevalence of obesity constitutes an undoubted and serious global health problem.
Poor communities face an array of distinct economic and social challenges that have quantifiably adverse effects on overall health and health outcomes.
Many interrelated factors dictate the relationship between income and health, including sociopolitical status, access to and quality of healthcare, health literacy, nutritional awareness, stress management, and exposure to environmental hazards.
The community suffers from a host of health issues, including disproportionately high incidences of obesity, diabetes, asthma, cardiovascular disease, mental illness, and other chronic health conditions.
Moreover, individuals from the Bronx are more likely to experience higher morbidity and mortality compared to white counterparts from middle-income or wealthier neighborhoods afflicted with the same disease, which is also the case nationwide.
Many urban health and epidemiological studies have documented the effects of environmental factors on the health of community residents, such as proximity to hazardous waste sites, quality of air and water, availability of high quality food, and access to open green spaces.
For example, the South Bronx currently contains nine waste transfer stationsalmost one-third of the total number in NYC, but only 6. This large density of waste facilities, particularly on the Hunts Point peninsula, imposes a heavy environmental burden on the surrounding neighborhoods.
In addition, there are other industrial and polluting land uses, including the Hunts Point Cooperative Market wholesale food distribution center the largest in the worldpower plants, and extremely heavy industrial truck traffic, that all exacerbate the environmental encumbrance experienced by Bronx residents.
Modern day EJ issues have existed arguably since the advent of the Industrial Revolution, characterized by a series of technological advancements and concomitant transformations of social life.
The large-scale production of commercial goods required the siting of manufacturing facilities, which also produced an immense amount of solid waste and air pollution. The factories tended to be located in poorer areas of cities, where construction and overhead costs were lower, cheap labor was plentiful, and complaints about environmental toxicity were easier to ignore.
This is how environmental injustice develops: Warren County residents protest against landfill siting in their community Sept. In the residents of a poor African-American community protested against the siting of a toxic waste disposal site in their community in Warren County, North Carolina.
This is often recognized as the birth of the EJ movement because it was the first issue of its kind—an environmental justice movement initiated by a low-income community of color—to achieve national prominence. This sparked a burst in political and academic discourse surrounding institutionalized discrimination in environmental land usage policy that disproportionately impacted the poor.
Instances of environmental injustices were increasingly documented and analyzed, and these studies were being published in prominent journals and news outlets. Eventually, case studies and official reports were being pushed by proponents of EJ to inform environmental and land usage policy decisions.
There were several milestones during the early years of the EJ movement that established its significance. Race, Class, and Environmental Quality.
These documents were instrumental towards the further advancement of the EJ movement, especially into the realm of federal policy. Finally, EJ principles became written into federal policy when President Bill Clinton came to office and issued Executive Orderwhich aimed to: That order is also intended to promote nondiscrimination in Federal programs substantially affecting human health and the environment, and to provide minority communities and low-income communities access to public information on, and an opportunity for public participation in, matters relating to human health or the environment.
Since the plant opened inresidents complained of foul odors and respiratory problems. Over several years, the organization had dozens of meetings with city officials, assembled and presented data to support their position, and held public demonstrations of civil disobedience, but it ultimately took a lawsuit for the city to respond.
Today, the facility continues to operate according to higher environmental standards, but of course problems remain. Plans for an incinerator stirred controversy even before it was built, because the community knew that it would pollute the air and cause respiratory problems, but construction proceeded.
The local community, activists, and environmental groups demanded it be shut down, especially after the data began to accumulate: Administrators from nearby schools claimed that the frequency of asthma-related sicknesses amongst their students doubled or tripled as well.
The incinerator violated state pollution standards consistently throughout its operation, with minimal repercussions. The medical waste incinerator proved to be unnecessary and provided few jobs.
In the case of the NYOFCO plant, the City actually saved money by closing it and redirecting operations to alternative sites, including a landfill and a more cost-effective and sustainable facility located in rural Pennsylvania.
And the loss of 40 jobs was compensated for by providing job placement assistance. Today Bronx residents continue to resist development of polluting facilities in the community, as South Bronx Unite is leading an ongoing legal battle against the opening of a controversial FreshDirect facility.
With the burgeoning green economy paradigmit has been proven time and time again that economic development and environmental stewardship are not mutually exclusive as was once believed. Maladies in the Bronx: One of the most obvious concerns, specific to industrial site-laden communities, is the impact of air pollution on health, particularly respiratory health because it represents the first instance of contact between polluted air and the inside of the body.
As asthma is a clear-cut consequence of respiratory health problems, it has been studied extensively as a consequence of poor air quality in the urban health field. Although asthma is a multi-factorial disease that is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, it has been well established that air pollution is a major exacerbating risk factor.
Epidemiological studies showing clear links between air pollution and asthma not to mention cancer, heart disease, metabolic diseases, and low birth weights have been conducted in cities all around the country for decades.
By the early 90s, health statistics made it obvious that the same phenomenon was happening in the Bronx, prompting community organizing, public health research, and a loud call for government action. The problem is so serious that the NY Senate recently passed a bill that would direct the New York State Department of Health to study and devise a plan of action addressing the disturbingly high asthma rates.
Among many other factors, the horrible air quality is recognized as a major factor affecting asthma incidence and outcomes. The partnership embodied the interdisciplinary approach necessary to understand and develop comprehensive solutions to the complex urban health issues unique to the Bronx population and environment.Indicator Data Links 3 Year Total County Rate NYS Rate timberdesignmag.com NYC Rate timberdesignmag.com County Ranking Group; Cardiovascular disease mortality rate per , High Blood Pressure - Statistical Fact Sheet High blood pressure was listed on death certificates as the primary cause of death of 61, Americans in High blood pressure was listed as a primary or contributing cause of death in about , of the more than million U.S.
deaths in high blood pressure mortality. Tables of Summary Health Statistics from the National Health Interview Survey Hypertension Prevalence and Control Among Adults: United States, – Characteristics of Visits to Primary Care Physicians by Adults Diagnosed with Hypertension: Findings from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey [PDF – KaB].
High Blood Pressure - Statistical Fact Sheet High blood pressure was listed on death certificates as the primary cause of death of 61, Americans in High blood pressure was listed as a primary or contributing cause of death in about , of the more than million U.S.
deaths in Health Status. Select one of the available data sets in the list below to view its health statistics table for New York City neighborhoods.
All statistics in these tables, except for those on Childhood Lead Poisoning, are also available in the Community Health Profiles. Using the Tables. To sort in an ascending order, click on a column heading once. diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cancer, and heart disease. Maintaining a healthy weight involves getting regular physical activity and eating well – choosing sensible portions of healthy foods.
Obesity in the South Bronx.