Earlier this month, Multnomah County commissioners voted unanimously on a resolution to declare racism a public health crisis. The resolution acknowledges Oregon’s historical institutional racism including the genocide of Indigenous people and Black exclusion laws. It says, “The experience of racism causes toxic stress and trauma on BIPOC individuals and communities at large that affect their mental health, and are linked to a range of negative impacts on physical health and well-being.” The resolution includes language about accountability measures, upstream solutions, community engagement and strategies to address health inequities.

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We hear from Ebony Clarke, the interim director of the Multnomah County Health Department and Leslie Gregory, founder and director of Right To Health.

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