All Are Welcome at Washtenaw County Public Health
When everyone is healthy, we all benefit. We proudly serve immigrants, refugees and all who live in Washtenaw County.
Washtenaw County Public Health has launched an “All Are Welcome Here” campaign to make sure everyone knows it is safe to walk through our doors and participate in our many public health services. Messaging in seven languages has been put up throughout our buildings to affirm that all are welcome.
“Our programs and services are available to everyone in Washtenaw County, regardless of immigration status, language, race, ethnicity, sexuality, or gender identity,” says Ellen Rabinowitz, Health Officer with Washtenaw County Public Health. “It would be devastating to the health of our entire community if individuals were afraid to seek services or participate in prevention or protection programs.”
Washtenaw County Public Health’s mission is to assure, in partnership with the community, a healthy community in which every resident enjoys the best possible state of health and well-being. This goal is impossible to reach if we are unable to serve every member of the Washtenaw County community, especially those who are most marginalized.
And while Washtenaw County Public Health has always prioritized achieving health equity for everyone, recent trends indicate more work is needed. Washtenaw ranks among the healthiest counties in the annual County Health Rankings, but near the bottom on equity measures like income inequality (80 out 83 in 2016). Life expectancy is 13 years lower for black residents, and 20 years lower for Latino residents, than for white residents.
Washtenaw County Public Health is working with other county departments, community partners and residents to reverse these trends and to ensure equitable distribution of resources as well as supportive policies and institutions.
At its last meeting, the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners began discussing potential county-level responses to confirm that Washtenaw remains a welcoming community. Where someone is born, where they live within the county or their race should not determine their ability to live a healthy, productive life.
“As a community, we need to do more to uphold the dignity, equality and human rights of all people,” says Rabinowitz. “This underscores our long-standing commitment to health equity and to protecting and improving health for everyone in our community.”
Washtenaw County Public Health
Washtenaw County Public Health promotes health and works to prevent disease and injury in our community. Our mission is to assure, in partnership with the community, the conditions necessary for people to live healthy lives through prevention and protection programs.
Visit Washtenaw County Public Health online at http://publichealth.ewashtenaw.org or call 734-544-6700. Public Health is located at 555 Towner Street in Ypsilanti. The Environmental Health Division is located at 705 N. Zeeb Road.
About the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps
The County Health Rankings & Roadmaps, a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, are available online at www.countyhealthrankings.org.