Human Ecology Forum

Articles from Vol. 22, No. 1, Winter

Coalitions Can Set Policy-Making on the Right Course
Ideally, policy is shaped by people and their needs and enacted by legislators through a democratic political process. The political process, however, has come to be viewed by many as too cumbersome and too adversarial for trying to resolve important...
Cutting Hospital Costs: Budget Surgery and National Soul Searching
Heath care reform will challenge hospitals to re-examine the expense, the quality, and the spirit of care. The hardest choices, however, will be social and ethical, not economic. Putting the brakes on the $900 billion-plus that Americans spend annually...
Families, They Are A-Changin'
Divorce, children born to single mothers, and a growing elderly population are threatening the economic well-being of many American families. Meeting their needs will require dramatic changes in public policy. The American family is changing. Divorce...
Finding Homes for Children with Special Needs
Thousands of children with special needs await adoption in New York State, and the number is rising rapidly. The state has taken steps to facilitate and encourage adoption, but few states provide support for families after adoption. Meet Antoine. He's...
Helping Troubled Kids Gain Self-Control
Emotionally troubled children in residential care facilities present a challenge for caretakers. There temporarily while social services departments counsel their families, they often strike out with little provocation. Residential care employees have...
Mortgage Lending Patterns Reveal Racial Bias
Studies show that certain racial groups and neighborhoods are being denied housing credit by lenders, despite protective legislation. How effective are laws and regulations in ensuring that all home loan applicants receive fair treatment? Minority applicants...
New Food Labels Could Leave Consumers in the Dark
The new regulations for food labels are designed to protect consumers from false health claims. The more lenient labeling policy of the past, however, served to raise public awareness about diet and health and encouraged the development of healthful...
Nutrition Surveillance Must Begin with Decision Makers, Not Data
Improving nutrition requires an understanding of decision-making processes rather than nutritional surveillance data. Nutrition surveillance systems, however well intentioned, are generally doomed to fail if data are collected first and the perceptions...
Radon Abatement: Who Should Pay?
Radon is blamed for thousands of deaths from lung cancer annually. This radioactive gas most often seeps into buildings through structural defects. The cost of protecting tenants and homeowners from the health risk of radon adds to the cost of housing,...
Rural Communities Have Special Needs for Health Care Reform
More than a quarter of the U.S. population live in rural areas. The Clinton health care plan is based in large part on suburban and urban realities. It may not accommodate the needs of rural residents. The original model behind the Clinton health care...
Sick Building Syndrome Linked to Fibers
Sick building syndrome (SBS) sometimes may be caused by synthetic fibers floating in the air from ceiling tiles, insulation, and ventilation systems and is unrelated to smoking or many other indoor air pollutants, according to studies by Alan Hedge,...
Status of American Children Ranks Low
The well-being of American children is worse than that of children in other developed countries on a wide range of measures, according to a recent analysis by Uri Bronfenbrenner, professor emeritus of human development and family studies and of psychology....