Why is healthy housing important?
- Many people in the United States live in substandard housing that is unsafe or unhealthful.
- Lower-socioeconomic status communities usually have limited access to quality housing stock, and therefore they are disproportionately affected by environmental hazards resulting from deteriorated housing.
- These hazards consist of inadequate heating and sanitation, indoor air pollution, lead-based paint, and structural, electrical, and fire hazards.
- A myriad of health problems result from these hazards, including injuries, asthma and other respiratory illnesses, and childhood lead poisoning.
What are Healthy Homes programs?
- Healthy Homes programs seek to respond to the interdependent and variable nature of health hazards. Healthy Homes programs offer a comprehensive and coordinated federal, state, and local approach and substantial flexibility and community participation in state and local decision-making processes.
- Considering health and housing problems together in a coordinated way is more efficient and cost-effective.
Healthy Homes activities include:
1. Identifying hazards in housing and communities.
2. Developing comprehensive approaches to remediate hazardous conditions.
3. Establishing neighborhood/interagency work groups to coordinate health,housing, environmental, community-based, and business sector efforts.
4. Evaluating and documenting the effect of deteriorated housing conditions on health and economic productivity.
5. Measuring the success of a coordinated and holistic approach to the problems associated with unhealthy housing.
What does the National Center for Healthy Housing do?
NCHH’s focus is twofold: to eliminate childhood lead poisoning and to guide the broader “healthy homes movement” which seeks to improve the health of children through safer and healthier home environments.
- NCHH translates basic health and science findings into practical and affordable methods that prevent, identify, and control housing-related health hazards.
- NCHH brings these measures into practice through technical assistance to state and local agencies, training, information dissemination, and policy change.
What is the relationship between NCHH and the Alliance for Healthy Homes?
- The National Center for Healthy Housing and the Alliance for Healthy Homes are allied national nonprofit organizations that are working to prevent and control lead and other environmental health hazards in housing.
- NCHH is a scientific and technical organization that carries out research, demonstration, and evaluation projects to determine more effective ways to prevent, identify, and control housing-related health hazards. NCHH also works to translate the results of its research into practical recommendations for federal, state, and local programs responsible for housing and health policies and programs. The Alliance is an advocacy organization that advances prevention through policy change at the national, state and local level.