Chicago, IL–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–July 21, 2005–Members of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL) are in Chicago today and Friday for the Trends Summit on Obesity. The Summit is being hosted by the Council of State Governments (CSG) as a part of the Healthy States Initiative, a partnership with CSG, NHCSL and the National Black Caucus of State Legislators (NBCSL). The Trends Summit on Obesity is a forum for NHCSL and NBCSL to discuss policy options and solutions to combat obesity.
Obesity is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions in the U.S. affecting children and adults, and is associated with the early onset of diabetes, heart disease and other health problems. Hispanics and African Americans are being hit the hardest and have less access to resources that provide healthy options. The cost of medical expenses related to obesity and associated health problems is also high and in 2003 alone were estimated at $75 billion nationally.
New York State Assemblyman and NHCSL President Felix W. Ortiz, Indiana state Representative John Aguilera, Kansas state Representative Mario Goico, Florida state Representative Bob Henriquez, and California state Senator Deborah Ortiz are attending the Trends Summit on Obesity and participating on several panel discussions.
NHCSL President Ortiz, who also chairs the New York State Nutrition Task Force, commented, “As Hispanic legislators it is important for us to understand the prevalence of obesity and how it is destroying our communities. This Summit is where we can address these issues and learn what other states are doing to provide healthier ways of living for children and adults.”
The Healthy States Initiative is designed to help state leaders make informed decisions on public health issues. The enterprise brings together state legislators, officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state health department officials, and public health experts to share information, analyze trends, identify innovative responses and provide expert advice on public health issues.
The National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL) is the premier national association of Hispanic state legislators working to design and implement policies and procedures that will improve the quality of life for Hispanics throughout the country. NHCSL was founded in 1989 as a nonpartisan, nonprofit 501 (c) 3 with the mission to be the most effective voice for the more than 300 Hispanic legislators. For more information visit http://www.nhcsl.org