Current Public Policy News and Events

Current Public Policy News and Events, Public Policy News Articles.
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Stress was leading reason teachers quit before pandemic, and COVID has made matters worse
Stress was the most common reason teachers cited for leaving the profession before and during the pandemic, according to a RAND Corporation survey of nearly 1,000 former public-school teachers. Three of four former teachers said work was often or always stressful in the most recent year in which they taught in a public school. Teachers cited stress nearly twice as often as insufficient pay as a reason for quitting. (2021-02-22)

Should Uber and Lyft be electrifying more vehicles?
Increases in air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions caused by ridesourcing impact human health and the environment--what happens when companies shoulder that cost? (2021-02-19)

Setting hospital prices would save more than increasing competition or price transparency
Spending on hospital services is the largest health spending category in the U.S., accounting for one-third of national health expenses. A new study finds that among strategies to curb hospital prices among the commercially insured population in the U.S., direct price regulations such as setting rates are likely to achieve greater savings than other approaches like increasing competition or improving price transparency. (2021-02-18)

New report calls for universal coverage of long-term care for older adults in U.S.
The COVID-19 pandemic's heavy toll on older Americans highlights the need to strengthen the nation's safety net for people in need of long-term services and supports, according to a new report published by Milbank Quarterly. The report proposes a system of universal coverage to support the long-term care of all older Americans. (2021-02-18)

Foreign language learners should be exposed to slang in the classroom and here's why....
Experts say English slang and regional dialect should not be banned from classrooms but when you're getting to grips with a second language how helpful is it to learn non-standard lingo? Very, says Sascha Stollhans, of the Department of Languages and Cultures at Lancaster University, who argues that standardised language norms are artificial and language learners should learn about all aspects of language, even the controversial ones. (2021-02-17)

Paid maternity leave has long-term health benefits
A study of women who were new mothers in the late 1970s found that those who were given longer, paid maternity leave lived healthier lives as they entered middle age. (2021-02-09)

Reimbursing hospitals for postpartum contraception could prevent unintended pregnancies
Researchers at Brown found that expanding access to long-acting reversible contraception methods, such as IUDs and implants, could give adolescents more agency in choosing whether and when to become pregnant again. (2021-02-09)

Study finds consensus for arming school resource officers, division on arming teachers and other staff
A new study examined public support for arming school employees. The study found consensus for arming school resource officers, but division over whether to arm teachers and nonteaching staff. The research has clear implications for policy, including the possibility that support for arming school staff may diminish over time as young people (who are less supportive) make up a larger share of voters. (2021-02-03)

Rescheduling drugs to lower risk of abuse can reduce use, dangers
A new study examined lessons from past efforts worldwide to schedule and reschedule drugs to identify general patterns and found that rescheduling drugs can lower use as well as the dangers associated with the drug. The findings have implications for policy. (2021-02-03)

Heightened immigration enforcement has troubling impact on US citizen children
Harsher immigration law enforcement by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement leads to decreased use of prenatal care for immigrant mothers and declines in birth weight, according to new Duke University research. In the study, published in PLoS ONE, researchers examine the effects of the federal 287(g) immigration program. (2021-02-03)

COVID unemployment assistance puts food on the table: BU study
Another wave of COVID-19 is putting millions out of work, while tens of millions more remain unemployed, and Congress debates aid. Now, a new Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) study shows that unemployment help directly translates to people being able to put food on the table. (2021-01-29)

OSU smoke- and tobacco-free policies grew more popular over time, even among tobacco users
Support for policies prohibiting smoking and the use of tobacco products on Oregon State University's Corvallis campus grew substantially over a five-year span, especially among tobacco users, a recent OSU study found. (2021-01-28)

Transportation investments could save hundreds of lives, billions of dollars
Investments in infrastructure to promote bicycling and walking could save as many as 770 lives and $7.6 billion each year across 12 northeastern states and the District of Columbia under the proposed Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI), according to a new Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health study. (2021-01-28)

World's largest opinion survey on climate change: Majority call for wide-ranging action
An innovative UNDP global survey conducted in collaboration with Oxford University experts -- the largest-ever opinion survey on climate change (1.2 million people in 50 countries) -- finds 64% (+/- 2%) deem climate an 'emergency.' Worldwide, most people clearly want a strong and wide-ranging policy response, and 4 of 18 policy options received majority support. Distributed across mobile gaming networks the survey drew 550,000 hard-to-reach youth respondents (14-18 years old) (2021-01-27)

The public health employment picture: Are graduates meeting the demands of the workforce?
In a study to gain understanding of the future public health workforce, researchers conducted a large-scale analysis of first employment outcomes of public health graduates and found that 78 percent were employed; only 5 percent were not employed and job seeking. These indicators may ultimately expand public health's reach and lead to healthier communities. The study is the first national analysis of of public health employment outcomes, and one of only such analyses ever conducted. (2021-01-25)

Governments need to set clear rules for vaccinating health care workers against COVID-19
An analysis undertaken by Faculty of Law professors and a physician-researcher from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa feels provincial and territorial governments should set clear rules for vaccinating health care workers against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in public and private settings. (2021-01-25)

Sliding life expectancy poses gender and inequity questions
Life expectancy gain is slowing in Australia - and figures show these figures are already sliding backwards in both the US and UK - yet little is being done by policy makers to understand specific gender and inequity reasons why this slip is occurring. (2021-01-22)

Navigating uncertainty: Why we need decision theory during a pandemic
Modern decision theory can assist policymakers in critical times such as the COVID-19 crisis, argue Bocconi University's Massimo Marinacci and Valentina Bosetti in a paper coauthored by Nobel laureate Lars Peter Hansen (2021-01-22)

Low-carbon policies can be 'balanced' to benefit small firms and average households - study
A review of ten types of policy used to reduce carbon suggests that some costs fall on those less able to bear them - but it also shows these policies can form the bedrock of a 'green recovery' if specifically designed and used in tandem. (2021-01-18)

Low-carbon policies can be 'balanced' to benefit small firms and average households
A review of ten types of policy used to reduce carbon suggests that some costs fall on those less able to bear them - but it also shows these policies can form the bedrock of a 'green recovery' if specifically designed and used in tandem. (2021-01-18)

Carbon pricing's disappointing effect on the pace of technological change
In order to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, the world must reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Carbon pricing is viewed by many governments and experts as the most important climate policy instrument. However, a new study shows that carbon pricing has been less effective as a driver of technological change than was previously anticipated. (2021-01-18)

Research finds increased trust in government and science amid pandemic
New Curtin University research has found a dramatic increase in people's trust in government in Australia and New Zealand as a result of the COVID pandemic. (2021-01-08)

Policymakers draw heavily from highly cited COVID-19 science
Policymakers around the world tend to reference new and highly cited COVID-19 research papers in their policy documents regarding the pandemic, Yian Yin and colleagues conclude after analyzing publications of both types from the first half of 2020. (2021-01-07)

Young adults say porn is their most helpful source of information about how to have sex
Young adults ages 18-24 years old in the U.S. say that porn is their most helpful source of information about how to have sex, according to a new study led by a Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researcher published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior. (2021-01-06)

A third of U.S. families face a different kind of poverty
Before the pandemic, one-third of U.S. households with children were already ''net worth poor,'' lacking enough financial resources to sustain their families for three months at a poverty level, finds new research from Duke University. In 2019, 57 percent of Black families and 50 percent of Latino families with children were poor in terms of net worth. By comparison, the rate for White families was 24 percent. (2021-01-06)

Elephant ivory continues to be disguised and sold on eBay
Research from the University of Kent's Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE) has found that elephant ivory is still being sold on the online marketplace eBay, despite its 10-year-old policy banning the trade in ivory. (2021-01-04)

Sweetened beverage sales bounced back quickly after Cook County tax repealed
Following the repeal of the short-lived Cook County, Illinois Sweetened Beverage Tax, sales of sweetened beverages went right back to where they were before the tax went into place, according to a new study. (2021-01-04)

Study examines the most effective COVID-19 control policies
A timely new study published by PLOS ONE examines the effectiveness of COVID-19 control policies in 40 jurisdictions including countries and U.S. states. In most places, socially intolerable measures such as stay-at-home orders, targeted or full workplace and school closings are required to curtail the growth of the virus. (2020-12-29)

US needs clear vaccine distribution strategy to defeat coronavirus
An opinion piece published today online calls for a national vaccine strategy now that COVID-19 vaccines are available. The author writes that a lack of clarity on a distribution plan sets unrealistic expectations among the public and could undermine public trust. But even with a clearly defined strategy in place, vaccinating hundreds of millions of Americans will not be easy. (2020-12-17)

Mandatory Biodiversity Net Gain may not deliver the desired outcomes for nature
England's proposed mandatory Biodiversity Net Gain requirement for new developments might not deliver on promises to increase biodiversity, according to research being presented at British Ecological Society's Festival of Ecology. (2020-12-16)

Remote learning here to stay despite challenges, survey finds
About two in 10 U.S. school districts have already adopted, plan to adopt or are considering adopting virtual schools after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new RAND Corporation study. The survey of district leaders indicates that virtual schooling was the innovative practice that most district leaders anticipated would continue, citing both student and parent demand for continuing various forms of online instruction. (2020-12-15)

Supporting renewable electricity: EU member states should coordinate reform efforts
The European Union recently adopted more ambitious climate goals for 2030 - their implementation is now the focus of debate. What do the Member States need to consider? A new study shows how important it is that governments coordinate policy reforms to support renewable electricity. Otherwise, many investors are likely to shift their focus to technologies that will continue to be subsidized or to countries where subsidies are still available. This outcome would increase the overall costs of expanding renewable electricity generation in Europe. (2020-12-15)

From publication bias to lost in information
From publication bias to lost in information In BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine, IQWiG researchers call for a central, public and worldwide portal for clinical trials (2020-12-11)

Most U.S. social studies teachers feel unprepared to teach civic learning
Only one in five social studies teachers in U.S. public schools report feeling very well prepared to support students' civic learning, saying they need additional aid with instructional materials, professional development and training, according to a RAND Corporation survey. (2020-12-08)

New study findings: militarizing local police does not reduce crime
New research shows that the militarization of local law enforcement through weapons, armored vehicles, combat attire, office equipment and other items provided by the Department of Defense does not reduce crime. Additionally, researchers found incomplete records and discrepancies in the federal government's tracking of surplus military equipment, or SME, issued to local law enforcement agencies. (2020-12-07)

Mailman School experts contribute to new Lancet report on health and climate change
Unless we take urgent action to tackle climate change, we can expect an ever-hotter world that threatens global health, disrupts lives and livelihoods and overwhelms healthcare systems, according to The Lancet's Global Countdown on Health and Climate Change, a comprehensive global analysis tracking the impact of climate change on human health across 41 key indicators. (2020-12-04)

For nationalistic regimes, similar COVID-19 policies are the sincerest form of flattery
Analysis from a University of Texas at Arlington assistant professor of public policy suggests that nationalistic governments around the globe are more likely to copy other nationalistic governments in responding to the current pandemic. (2020-12-03)

Xenophobic and racist policies in the US may have harmful effect on birth outcomes
The first U.S. Executive Order of the 2017 travel ban targeting individuals from Muslim majority countries may be associated with preterm births for women from those countries residing in the U.S., according to a new study conducted at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. The research also showed that structurally xenophobic and racist policies in the U.S. may have a harmful effect on early life indicators of life-long health outcomes. (2020-12-02)

First report card on biosimilars in oncology
In a Policy Review in The Lancet Oncology, Y. Tony Yang, a professor at the George Washington University School of Nursing and Milken Institute School of Public Health, along with his co-authors, identify factors preventing the effective launch of oncology biosimilars in the United States, including the struggle to garner market share and fighting patent litigation lawsuits across the country. (2020-12-01)

Stimulus relief funds increase social distancing to stop spread of COVID-19
New research suggests that that those suffering from economic hardships are less likely comply with new stay-at-home orders; however, these same U.S. residents would be more likely to adhere to the new public health guidelines if their households received stimulus funds. (2020-12-01)

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