City council approves $1M initiative to reduce health disparities in west Fresno


FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — City council approved an agreement with Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission to implement a $1 million initiative to reduce health disparities in west Fresno on Thursday.

The DAWN Initiative will fund efforts to combat COVID-19 and underlying health conditions in west Fresno, city officials say.

The initiative will be financed from the General Fund Darling relocation set-aside
and CARES Act funding.

“This is one of many investments to correct the historical injustices by addressing the immediate health needs COVID-19 has resurfaced and provide long term solutions to combat the health and environmental conditions that result in disproportionate infant mortality rates for our African American babies in west Fresno,” said Council President Miguel Arias.

Over the next five years, Fresno EOC will work with the designated project partners to address historic environmental and health conditions that have disproportionately affected the West Fresno community, and specifically the African American community, according to city officials.

DAWN aims to reduce health disparities, infant mortality, preterm birth rates, and environmental risk factors through workforce development, infrastructure improvements, and the creation of a women’s clinic.

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