Statement on Racism as a Public Health Issue

On Aug. 20, the City of San Antonio City Council approved a resolution titled "Declaring Racism A Public Health Crisis  And to Establish Stronger Efforts to Promote Racial Equity in San Antonio."  After laying out the historical and data-based reasoning for the resolution, the Council declared a commitment to taking several steps to address the impact of racisim on our community, particularly with regards to health and racial equity. The resolution passed by a vote of 9-0 with one abstention and one absence.  

On behalf of Methodist Healthcare Ministries, I applaud the City of San Antonio City Council for passing this resolution today and making it clear that racism is a public health issue negatively affecting our community. We at Methodist Healthcare Ministries stand ready to support efforts to engage “historically marginalized communities in the development of policy solutions for local issues related to health equity; and improving data systems in order to disaggregate health data by race/ethnicity and income and facilitate data-informed decision-making processes to address the health disparities in our community." 

We know in order to improve the wellness of the least served and fully live out our mission of “Serving Humanity to Honor God,” we must recognize the inequities inherent in communities we live in and serve that contribute to poor health outcomes. Health Equity is both the process and goal by which Methodist Healthcare Ministries seeks to carry out that purposeHealth Equity is a framework of thought and action that strives to reduce racial and socio-economic disparities and create fair and just opportunity for every person to reach their full potential for health and life and contribute to that of others.

Today's announcement by the San Antonio City Council is a great step towards health equity for our community. Together, we can do much more to support resilient families and thriving communities across South Texas.