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The Public Health Crisis of Racism


Recent events have emphasized the ongoing and persistent problems of structural racism in the United States, which goes hand in hand with injustice and inequality. Racism must be addressed through government policies and action, but racism is not simply a political issue, it is a public health issue.

Dean Sten Vermund and Senior Associate Dean Melinda Pettigrew
A note from the YSPH Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and the Office of the Dean

We Can and Will do More

Throughout history, groups with resources and power have sought to exert control over other groups through violence. Terror and subterfuge were key tools in the subjugation and genocide of Native Americans and the theft of their lands. From the 16th to the 19th centuries, the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database suggests that 12.5 million Africans were kidnapped and shipped to the Americas. We have seen near-enslavement of Latinx and Asian persons for forced farm or railroad construction labor in the 19th and 20th centuries.

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A message from the Dean and Associate Deans of the Yale School of Public Health

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