February 2021 NHPHA Legislative Policy Update

by Joan Ascheim, MSN, former NHPHA Executive Director

Virtual Testimony

The legislature is in full swing via Zoom, like everything else these days. Testifying is a bit different, but advocates can submit testimony via email and testify using Zoom links provided for each hearing. Should you want to testify on a bill, you need to submit notice in advance using the links on the general court website about halfway down on the right on the home page. New Futures is conducting trainings on remote advocacy on February 3 at 3 p.m. and the budget process on February 10 at 3 p.m. The link to their training page is here.

NHPHA Priority Bills

Below is a list of bills that are priorities for NHPHA listed by priority area. The most up-to-date information for each bill is provided.

Prevention and Access
  • Advocate for community health workers infrastructure funding

       – LSR 1044 – establishing a position of community health worker in each the state’s public health network (NHPHA
          supports) – No hearing is scheduled yet

  • Advocate for funding and infrastructure for equitable distributions of vaccines

       – HB 604 – expanding the NH vaccine association to include adult vaccines (NHPHA supports) – Public hearing is
          February 1, 2021, at 11 a.m. We would encourage our partners to testify in support of this important bill that will
          increase access for adults to vaccines!

       – HB 221 – making the state vaccine registry an opt-in program (NHPHA opposes) – no hearing scheduled yet

Public Health Infrastructure
  • Advocate for funding to support foundational public health services at the state and local levels
        – LSR 1046 – making an appropriation to the department of HHS for primary prevention services for families – no
           hearing scheduled yet

  • Advocate for support to implement the State Health Improvement Plan and assure it addresses the need of marginalized and vulnerable populations

         – HB 157 – repealing the state health assessment and state health improvement plan council (NHPHA opposes) –
            hearing was held January 26, 2021. The only testimony in support of the bill was from the sponsor Representative
            Jess Edwards who saw it as duplicative of other state planning processes. In addition to NHPHA’s testimony,
            there were many partners present to testify in opposition to the bill. The bill is due out of committee
            March 11, 2021.

Financial Security
  • Support efforts to provide for a living/minimum wage
  • Support efforts for job training for skill-based careers, particularly for marginalized populations
  • Support a step-down approach to public benefits reductions

The policy committee is meeting with the Granite State Organizing Project soon to determine what bills we will support to assure financial security for families in New Hampshire.

Food Security
  • Advocate to expand use of the WIC program (farmer’s market, online purchasing)
  • Support expansion of SNAP, Granite State Market Match, and farm-to-school initiatives

        – LSR 1020 – Relative to the SNAP program – requests funds to access federal fund (NHPHA supports) – no
           hearing scheduled yet.

The NHPHA Policy Committee welcomes support on all the bills we have prioritized. Should you want to do so and/or join the Policy Committee, please contact Joan Ascheim at [email protected] or Annika Stanley-Smith at [email protected].

Share this post:

Comments on "February 2021 NHPHA Legislative Policy Update"

Comments 0-5 of 0

Please login to comment