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EMT training program builds a pipeline from jail to job

February 29, 2012

By Callie Shanafelt

A program that turns troubled youths into paramedics is helping to change the lives of young men in Oakland.

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Suspensions plummet at Richmond High

February 29, 2012

By this time last year Richmond High had recorded close to 500 suspensions. This year the school, which caters to one of the poorest and most underserved student populations in the Bay Area, has halved that number through an approach inspired by the Restorative Justice movement.

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Language will be barrier to health coverage, study says

February 29, 2012

More than 100,000 Californians could miss out on the benefits of federal health reform because language barriers would keep them from buying insurance in a new online health insurance exchange, according to a new study by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network, the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, and the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. The study concludes that more than 1 million Californians with limited English skills will be newly eligible for tax credits to subsidize their coverage through the California Health Benefit Exchange, but fewer than half of those residents are expected to enroll, for various reason. If language were not a barrier, the study says, 110,000 more people would apply. To see the entire study, go here.

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Farm Day offers some healthy-eating tips

February 28, 2012

Farm Day offers some healthy-eating tips

By Melissa Flores

The Salinas Valley is in the heart of California’s central coast farmland, and once a year, local third-grade students get a chance to learn about the industry that drives the region.

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Progress on teen pregnancy imperiled

February 27, 2012

By Heather Gilligan

Teen pregnancy rates in the US have decreased dramatically in recent years, and California’s rates of teen births are as low as they’ve been in the last two decades.

But the news about teen pregnancy isn’t uniformly good, advocates say. Latinas and African Americans have much higher teen birth rates than white teens in California, mirroring a national trend, and state budget cuts threaten the state’s prevention programs.

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Sodium seeps into American’s daily diet

February 27, 2012

Sodium seeps into American’s daily diet

By Julissa McKinnon

About 90 percent of Americans are overloading on sodium, but don’t blame your saltshaker.

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Death of Single Payer Health Plan Inspires Change of Thought

February 24, 2012

There’s a lot of focus on health care and health insurance in the news these days. But whether one ever sees a doctor or enters a hospital, there are things each of us can do, right now, to minimize our health problems.

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Climate Change Planning: An Opportunity for Public Health

February 23, 2012

Groundbreaking legislation passed in 2008 could be a major step toward changing the way neighborhoods are designed throughout the state, curbing sprawl and creating safer, more walkable communities. The law, known as SB 375, is a huge and unprecedented opportunity for public health, potentially making it safer and easier for all Californians — including elderly, disabled, and low-income residents — to be more active, breathe cleaner air, and even buy healthier foods.

But to make sure the law promotes public health on all of these fronts – and serves as a strong model for other states around the country – Californians need to keep policy leaders accountable for its potential.

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State prison population set to drop by one-fourth

February 23, 2012

California’s prisons will have 40,000 fewer inmates by 2017 and the state will be supervising 51,000 fewer parolees thanks to an historic shift of responsibility for low-level criminals from the state to county governments, according to a report released Thursday.

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‘Just Run’ gets kids moving

February 22, 2012

‘Just Run’ gets kids moving

By Melissa Flores

The sight of students running around Frank Paul Elementary School in Salinas has become a regular thing before school, during breaks and after classes end. The kindergarten through sixth-grade campus has 28 classes who signed up to participate in a fitness program that is meant to make exercise fun. The Just Run program was created seven years ago by people involved in the Big Sur International Marathon. The members, including Susan Love and Mike Dove, wanted to come up with a way to encourage fitness for children as obesity rates for both adults and children continued to rise.

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