Other Public Health Law
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Public health law is about the government’s power to protect and preserve the health of the community and the tensions between that power and individual rights to autonomy, privacy, liberty, property and other legally protected interests. It is about health equity and ensuring that the state’s legal public health powers and duties are balanced with respect for private rights. Because of these tensions and the need for this balance, public health law is a dynamic, evolving and often controversial field.
Law and public health intersect in many ways, resulting in a rich field of public health law topics. Our attorneys specialize in providing a number of services related to commercial tobacco control, healthy eating and physical activity, but have expertise in other areas of public health law, such as preemption, lobbying laws and legal limits on public health advocacy, healthy housing, and more.
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Law impacts our health and our opportunities to lead healthy lives in multi-layered ways. This resource offers guidance on how to use the Five Essential Public Health Law Services Framework and other resources to address racism and other social determinants of health in the public health sector.
When a law is preempted, it is invalid and has no effect. In a local tobacco control context, preemption removes decision-making authority from local governments and centralizes it in the federal and state governments.