Conference to Address Housing and Health Inequities Impacting Coloradans
KEYSTONE, CO – Coloradans are in the deep throes of a housing crisis – one that is leaving thousands without stable, safe and affordable homes and the means to a healthy life. This year, the Colorado Health Symposium focuses on the inextricable link between housing and health and explores opportunities to address the inequities exasperated by an unfair and unjust housing system.
Half of Coloradans report that it has become harder for residents to afford their rent or mortgage in recent years (52%). In addition, nearly three in 10 (28%) say they worry that they might lose their home because they can’t afford their monthly payments, including one in eight (12%) who are “very worried.”
Beyond the basic need of having a viable roof over our heads, where you live directly impacts your health. Unhealthy housing has been linked to a higher prevalence of chronic disease among other markers of poor health, including an increased rate of obesity, postponing necessary medical care and increased behavioral and emotional challenges for youth.
At this year’s Symposium, local and national experts gather to discuss the systemic inequities that make a healthy home unattainable for many Coloradans. Content will focus on bold solutions to create a more equitable housing ecosystem in Colorado.
The Symposium offers a range of perspectives including those from policy, economics, health, housing and community leadership experts who have demonstrated commitment and success in eliminating inequities in the housing system—both regionally and at the national level.
In addition to robust conference content, The Colorado Trust’s Health Equity Advocacy Cohort and the Colorado Health Institute will release the latest data on the impacts of housing instability on specific population groups and recommended policy solutions.
Featured Presenters Include:
• Rowena Alegría, Chief Storyteller, City and County of Denver
• Mehrsa Baradaran, Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives & Robert Cotten Alston Associate Chair in Corporate Law, School of Law, University of Georgia
• Matthew Desmond, Pulitzer Prize Winner, Author and Urban Ethnographer
• Becky Margiotta, Principal and Owner, Billions Institute
• Brian Rahmer, Vice President, Health and Housing, Enterprise Community Partners
• Matt Yglesias, Co-Founder, Vox.com
“Where we live matters when it comes to our health. Housing is a key driver of health, and significantly impacts our educational attainment, economic and employment opportunities, access to viable transportation, healthy foods and more,” shared Karen McNeil-Miller, president and CEO of the Colorado Health Foundation. “We will shine a light on how our broken housing system got to where it is today and how we can work together to ensure all Coloradans have what they need for a healthy home.”
The Symposium, an annual health conference hosted by the Colorado Health Foundation, is expected to draw over 600 attendees from organizations across the housing services spectrum, grassroots and equity-focused organizations, public health departments, policymakers, academia and other nonprofit entities. Photography from the event is available upon request.
Interested in listening to the presentations and following the conversation? Join us online:
• Select morning plenary and keynote sessions will be broadcast live during all three days of the conference. Closed captioning will be provided.
• Follow the conversation from Keystone on the Colorado Health Foundation’s Twitter account @Health Symposium and by using the hashtag #19CHS. Updates and photos from the event will also be available on the Foundation’s Facebook page and its Instagram feed.