March 28, 2013

A Cleveland, OH city prohibition against the use of artificial trans fats in restaurants was upheld by the Ohio Court of Appeals, overturning state legislation supported by the food industry. ChangeLab Solutions supported the city in the form of an amicus brief, filed jointly with Public Health Law Center.

The Court ruled that local authority over municipal food policies may not be preempted by the state, and noted the involvement of special interest groups in drafting the legislation. Cleveland is now free to enforce its regulation of artificial trans fats in foods prepared in local stores and restaurants.

March 26, 2013

ChangeLab Solutions joined with other national public health organizations this week in support of New York City's sugar sweetened beverage portion control regulations. As signatory on an amicus brief filed with the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court, we are standing with the city's appeal on the judicial decision that invalidated the measure. Our press release is available here, and the National Alliance for Hispanic Health's press release is available here.

Thank you to our funders, including The California Endowment, for supporting both the brief on which we're signatories and a second amicus brief, filed yesterday, which addresses the strong correlation between sugary drink consumption and obesity and chronic diseases, and the disproportionate impact on underserved communities.

Cities, including New York and counties across the nation, have a duty to make our communities healthier, even when that means trying ideas that may seem radical at first. We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to make choices that promote good health, and this regulation—which keeps huge SSB portions from being the default choice—is a tool to improve those opportunities.

Mayor Bloomberg's press release is available here.

Signatories on the first brief include: National Alliance for Hispanic Health (lead signatory), Comunilife, Montefiore Medical Center, Harlem Health Promotion Center, National Congress of Black Women, Inc., New York Chapter, National Association of Hispanic Nurses, Association of Black Cardiologists, The California Endowment, New York Chapter 2, American Academy of Pediatrics, Prevention Institute, Shape Up America!, United Puerto Rican Organization of Sunset Park (UPROSE), Walter Willett, MD, MPH, DrPH, Maya Rockeymoore, PhD, Children’s Aid Society, and the Mount Sinai Medical Center.

Signatories on the second brief include: National Association of Local Boards of Health (lead signatory), ChangeLab Solutions, Yale Rudd Center, Public Health Association of New York City, Public Health Law Center, Health Officers Association of California, National Association of County and City Health Officials, American Public Health Association, Professor Peter Jacobson, Professor Larry Gostin, Professor Lindsay Wiley, Professor Wendy Parmet, Professor Lance Gable and Professor Micah Berman.

March 14, 2013

A judge ruled this week against New York City’s proposed limits on the sale of large size sugar sweetened beverages, citing limits on governmental power. NPLAN's Manel Kappagoda blogged about the issue at, and explains in more detail why the restriction is still worth pursuing.

March 5, 2013

New York City's ban on flavored tobacco products has been upheld by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. The law remains in effect, as does a similar ban in Providence, Rhode Island, which was upheld in December. See our FAQ on local bans of flavored smokeless tobacco for updated information following the outcome of challenges filed by tobacco companies.

March 5, 2013

ChangeLab Solutions' Samantha Graff recently presented at a workshop funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and hosted by the Institute of Medicine's Standing Committee on Childhood Obesity Prevention. Challenges and Opportunities for Change in Food Marketing to Kids brought together researchers, policymakers, advocates, and other stakeholders to discuss trends in food and beverage marketing to children.

There were presentations on topics ranging from emerging marketing and communications strategies to digital marketing efforts to research on the effects of marketing on children to policy trends and lessons learned. Samantha Graff presented on the current legal and political climate on policy efforts to curb food marketing to children, and focused on developments in constitutional law. A published document provides an in-depth summary of the presentations and findings from the workshop.