Legislative Priorities

NHPHA advocacy volunteers Marie Mulroy and J.J. Smith posed with Executive Director Joan Ascheim.We have defined our priority advocacy areas for the 2020 Legislative Session as below:

Equity and Health Outcomes

NHPHA believes that all people who live in New Hampshire should have a fair and just opportunity to be healthier. This requires remedying obstacles to health such as poverty, discrimination, and their consequences, including perceived powerlessness and lack of access to good jobs with fair pay, quality education and housing, safe environments, and health care. Inequity in these areas results in health and wellness disparities, including a substantial burden of avoidable illness.

Healthy Environments – Natural, Built, and Social

NHPHA believes in the importance of addressing the environments in which we live, learn, work, and play to ensure a healthy population. Environmental risk factors in the air, water, soil, and our food system caused by pollution, chemical exposures, occupational and built environment hazards, natural disasters, and climate change contribute to diseases and injuries, including the top two leading causes of death in New Hampshire, cancer and heart disease. Emerging and ongoing issues of environmental health in New Hampshire include drinking water contamination, mercury in our lakes and waterways, lead exposure due to the age of our housing stock to name a few. Other issues of importance include the indoor and outdoor air quality, and features of the built environment that influence behaviors, physical activity patterns, social networks and access to resources.

Substance Misuse – Improving Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery

NHPHA believes the high rate of substance use disorders, a chronic remitting and relapsing medical disease that is preventable and treatable, remains a public health crisis facing the state of New Hampshire. In 2018 NH had the sixth highest rate of drug overdose deaths in the country. In order to tackle this issue that is crippling the vitality of New Hampshire communities, our state needs to continue to work to improve prevention, early identification, treatment, recovery support, law enforcement, and interdiction. It is well-known that tobacco products contain the addictive drug nicotine as well as many other toxic chemicals. The use of tobacco, in any form, can lead to addiction, significant morbidity, and premature death.

Priority Bills – January 2020

Click here to see NHPHA's priority bills as of January 2020.