In Franklin County, Ohio’s most populated county, officials passed a resolution on May 19, 2020, declaring racism a public health crisis.
The new declaration is part of the Rise Together Blueprint for addressing poverty in Central Ohio. It comes just one week after the Franklin County Board of health also declared racism a public health crisis.
In a statement, Commissioner Kevin L. Boyce said, “Racism has been a pandemic long before the current coronavirus pandemic. Our declaration today is important, but it’s not saying anything that hasn’t been apparent for a long time. COVID-19 has highlighted the health divide between black and white Ohioans, however, and I hope that it can be the catalyst we need to reform the whole health system so that it works for all of us equally.”