Speaker: De’Sean Quinn; Councilmember, Position No. 7, City of Tukwila
Lecture Summary: In King County, there is evidence that low-income and minority populations experience disproportionate access to healthy food, with significant impacts to community health. Councilmember Quinn will speak to the intersection of environmental conservation, social equity, and health disparities, referencing his ongoing work in organizations like King Conservation District and Forterra, and in his role as an elected representative in South King County and on the King County Land Conservation Advisory Board. Urban agriculture, land preservation, authentic community engagement, and more all play a role in an integrated approach to equitable community health.
About the Winter Seminar Series: Food equity, defined as access to safe, affordable, and nutritious foods, is increasingly being viewed as a basic human right. While access to healthy foods can be compromised by war and conflict, geography and climate change, it can also be affected by inequities in socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity, education, and income and for groups that are low income, elderly, or chronically ill. Diet quality, weight status, and even life expectancy are determined by where people live because their food environment defines how—and where—they get their food. Locally within Seattle and King County, sharp disparities in diet quality and health have been observed. The rising prevalence of non-communicable diseases and the role of the environment, as well as health equity and social justice, are themes that the UW Population Health Initiative are addressing and each is connected to foods and nutrition. The Winter 2017 Seminar will address all of these issues directly, drawing on population health experts from within and outside the UW. The seminar is open to all UW faculty, staff, and students.