New county council aims to tackle racial disparities in healthcare – The Mercury News

New county council aims to tackle racial disparities in healthcare - The Mercury News

In Santa Clara County, residents who identify as Latino are the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, accounting for half of all cases. That’s far from commensurate with the county’s population, of which Latino residents make up only about 25 percent.

Overall, the COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected communities of color. But the virus isn’t the only health issue where racial disparities are evident, and the county is hoping to address some of the underlying causes with a new community council.

The Community Racial and Health Disparities Council was designed by County Supervisors Susan Ellenberg, whose District 4 includes Cambrian and Burbank wards of Campbell, West San Jose and San Jose, and Joe Simitian, whose District 5 includes Cupertino, Saratoga, Palo Alto and parts of Sunnyvale and San Jose.

Ellenberg said that last summer, as protests raged across the country after the police murders of several unarmed blacks, she felt “an obligation that we in government needed to examine very carefully the shortcomings of our existing systems which constantly left some members of the community behind.”

The supervisory board declared …

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