policy

Environmental Health Workforce Legislation: April 2017

NEHA Executive Director Applauds Environmental Health Workforce Legislation

A very real threat to United States national security is a global pandemic. Representative Brenda Lawrence’s (D-MI) Environmental Health Workforce Legislation is an important step on the journey to ensuring that every American family is protected through capable public servants who are experts at preventing and responding to outbreaks. This legislation displays political leadership which benefits the nation.

The Environmental Health Workforce Act of 2017, is being introduced this Wednesday, April 5th. It is tied to National Public Health Week because we believe that to have a strong public health system we need a strong environmental health workforce. 

The Environmental Health Workforce Act of 2017 will:

  1. Direct the US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), in conjunction with relevant stakeholders, to develop model standards, guidelines, and technical assistance for credentialing environmental health workers.
  2. Direct HHS to develop a comprehensive environmental health workforce plan that identifies and addresses ways to strengthen the environmental health workforce.
  3. Direct the Comptroller General of the United States to examine and identify best practices in 6 states related to training and credentialing requirements for environmental health workers. This report will compare the best practices of 3 states that currently have credentialing requirements (Maryland, Ohio, and Washington) and 3 states that do not have such requirements (Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania).

The National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) is a professional organization with members in the public and private sectors, academia and uniformed services. NEHA offers credentialing, training, education, networking, professional development, and policy involvement. Learn more about NEHA at www.neha.org and follow @nehaorg on Twitter.

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