Building Healthy Communities Long Beach: September 2016
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September 20:
Community Conversation on Jobs
Community Calendar   |   Partners   |   Jobs   |   Resources
BHC partners and local residents bring health perspective to the city’s budget
As the city council held hearings and meetings on the fiscal year 2016-2017 city budget, residents and organizations in Central and West Long Beach had the opportunity bring a community-health perspective to the budget discussions. The city's budget is an annual plan that matches $2.7 billion dollars of resources to the needs in city. This cycle, organizations focusing on health equity worked to ensure the budget reflected the needs of the most marginalized in the community. 

In the month of August, Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach conducted community outreach and education to residents about the city budget and how they could engage in the public process. In addition, 32 residents from Central and North Long Beach volunteered to take the city’s budget priority survey that's used to measure public opinion on spending priorities.

Of the surveys BHC collected, the top three priorities included:
  • Providing services for the homeless;
  • Providing free or low-cost recreation programs for youth; and
  • Providing community park programs for youth and teens.
In the same surveys, the lowest three priorities were:
  • Prosecuting all adult misdemeanor crimes committed in the City;
  • Providing specialized Police units (property crimes, directed enforcement, etc.); and
  • Enforcing traffic laws.
Along with the budget priority survey, we created a one-page budget advocacy tool to educate community members about the budget process. Among the items BHC partners advocated for during this round of budget negotiations, is ongoing funding for the Language Access Policy, initial funding for the newly proposed Office of Equity, Access, and Prevention through the Department of Health and Human Services, and local wage enforcement.
Taking action for healthy and affordable housing in Long Beach
The stories of low-income renters, homeless individuals, and long time residents who are now being priced out of their neighborhoods have been major conversations in Long Beach over the past few months. Now, residents involved in every aspect of the housing crisis have the opportunity to take action and raise awareness about the severity of the issues while seeking sustainable policy solutions.

On September 22nd, renters across the country are urged to join the National Renter’s Day of Action by taking to the streets to build a people's movement led by renters, homeless families, and low-income homeowners to demand immediate action to end the crisis and guarantee that all people have the right to a home. In Long Beach, community members can join Housing Long Beach beginning at 3:00pm in Downtown Long Beach for a march and rally. The exact location will be announced on the 22nd via social media. Follow Housing Long Beach on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram for more information. 

At the policy level, Mayor Garcia has announced the dates for a series of affordable and workforce housing workshops, in collaboration with an affordable housing study group formed in the beginning of the year by his office. Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach participated in the study group along with community partners such as Housing Long Beach, Century Villages at Cabrillo, the LGBTQ Center of Long Beach, Facilitation Lab, and The California Endowment. The first event is a roundtable discussion with housing advocates on Monday, September 19 at Mark Twain Library from 6:00pm to 7:30pm. 

The continued housing crisis is a systemic problem that will continue to require the collaboration of everyone in our community. For future housing related events and opportunities, continue to check our community calendar at
September 20: Community Conversation on Jobs
Unemployment, underemployment, and the lack of access to opportunities for workforce development continues to be a significant barrier to health for many Long Beach residents. In addition, the African American and Latino community is disproportionately impacted when it comes to workforce opportunities and living wage jobs. The Long Beach Local Hire Coalition is inviting local residents who have had experiences in these areas to a Community Conversation on Jobs to begin the dialogue around these inequities and inform the coalition’s future work. The event will feature a short presentation by former councilwoman Tonia Reyes Uranga and offer free food and interpretation for attendees. The Community Conversation on Jobs will take place at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park on Tuesday, September 20th from 11:30-2pm. For more information, visit the BHC community calendar
BHC Long Beach welcomes Ariel as our new office administrator
Welcome Ariel to the BHC team!Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach is excited to welcome Ariel Halstead as our new office administrator! Ariel holds a Masters in Public Health and Graduate Certificate in Latino Health and Nutrition Studies from California State University, Long Beach. She identifies as a strong Latina with interests in environmental health, maternal and child health, and overall community health. She has worked with low-income families and communities for the past three years with different non-profit organizations such as PIH Health and National Council of La Raza/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation and Leadership Training. Ariel oversees our day-to-day office operations and provides support for our campaigns and partners. If you are in need of conference room or equipment reservations, email
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