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Uprooting the Structural Drivers of Health Inequity

A series of virtual discussions for decisionmakers

Good Governance

How are leaders re-imagining their policy approaches amid the pandemic, economic crisis, and growing movement for racial justice?

What work is happening at the local level to change policies and transform systems in ways that address structural inequities?

ChangeLab Solutions has launched a six-part virtual series to collaboratively engage with these questions and explore how organizations and advocates are addressing inequity in their efforts to improve health outcomes. In each episode, a diverse panel of partners engages in deep-dive discussions, connecting the drivers of health inequity to policy change in a key area: employment, education, planning, food systems, or housing.

Episode 1

Growing Policy Solutions for Improved Community Health explores the fundamental drivers of health inequities. Laying the groundwork for our series, the panelists investigate what the drivers of health inequity are and how different sectors — including community-based organizations, government, and funders — are addressing them and advancing structural solutions.


  • Sarah de Guia, JD, CEO at ChangeLab Solutions (moderator)
  • Oxiris Barbot, MD, adjunct assistant professor at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and senior fellow for public health and social justice at The JPB Foundation
  • Wendoly Marte, director of economic justice at Community Change
  • Cara James, PhD, president and CEO of Grantmakers in Health

Watch a recording of episode 1 below. We will update this page with a summary of key takeaways and resources from this event. 

Episode 2

Policy Solutions for Equitable Enforcement of Employment Laws explores laws and policies that affect workers with low income and how inequitable enforcement of laws intended to protect these workers can exacerbate health-related inequities. Panelists delve into innovations and trends in policy development in the employment sector, discussing the enforcement landscape, paid leave, and structural racism.


  • Maya Hazarika Watts, senior attorney at ChangeLab Solutions (moderator)
  • Ruqaiijah Yearby, professor of law at Saint Louis University School of Law and co-founder of the Institute for Healing Justice and Equity
  • Jared Make, vice president of A Better Balance
  • LiJia Gong, counsel at Public Rights Project

Watch a recording of episode 2 below. We will update this page with a summary of key takeaways and resources from this event.  

Upcoming Episode

Register for Episode 3Policy Solutions to Address Systemic Racism in Education, which will take place on Wednesday, April 28, 11:30am-1:00 pm PT / 2:30-4:00pm ET. Our panel of experts will explore how education policy connects to today’s broader conversation about racism as a public health crisis. Panelists will discuss examples of intersectionality in developing antiracist policies and practices for grades K–12, with a focus on race, gender, and disability. Together, the panelists will envision a new agenda for public health law that recognizes the fundamental importance of educational policies that oppose racism and promote health equity. 


  • Thalia González, associate professor at Occidental College and senior scholar at Georgetown University Law Center
  • Kristen Harper, director of policy and outreach at Child Trends
  • Charlene Russell-Tucker, acting commissioner of the Connecticut State Department of Education
  • Ingrid Canady, executive director of the State Education Resource Center
  • Ben Cairns, principal of Lake County High School
  • Alexis Etow, managing director at ChangeLab Solutions (moderator)

Register now