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  • Blog Post: Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice - Start with Blueberries and Help with Policy!

    I don’t know about you, but this time of year, all I want to do is snack on fresh Vermont blueberries. Yummy! I put a bowl in the front of our fridge, and every time the door is opened, it’s hard for someone in my family not to grab a handful and pop them in their mouth. That’s a...
  • Blog Post: New USDA Rules to Improve School Health Environment: What They Are and What You Can Do to Get Involved.

    Teaching children healthy eating habits is critical to their long-term health. Parents strive to instill healthy habits at home, and schools have worked hard to improve the nutritional quality of school meals, snacks, and beverages sold in schools. Schools, especially, play a critical role in promoting...
  • Blog Post: Healthy Kids Meals, Good for Kids and Good for Business!

    Parents rely on restaurants often these days for meals given hectic work and family schedules. But even though dining out is fun, fast, and easy, it’s not always healthy for kids. We’d like to change that. We’re working in Vermont to ensure that all restaurant kids’ meals meet...
  • Blog Post: A Lifesaving Delivery

    Thirty-two states have passed laws or adopted curriculum changes to require hands-only guidelines-based CPR training for all students before they graduate from high school. That means that each year, more than 1.8 million public high schools graduates will have been trained in CPR. Just over a year ago...
  • Blog Post: AEDs in Schools is on the Move

    Thanks to a small but mighty group of advocates, a bill requiring all public schools to have AEDs has passed the Senate. We are working with the House to quickly take it up by this fall. A group of dedicated volunteers have shared their heartbreaking stories of losing a child to sudden cardiac arrest...
  • Blog Post: Let's Keep NJ's Young Hearts Healthy

    Over the past year, several states and numerous municipalities throughout the nation have opted to raise the age to purchase tobacco and e-cigarettes to 21. New Jersey is among the many states that is considering raising the age. The Senate voted to raise the age in June. It is our hope that the Assembly...
  • Blog Post: MA Legislature Ends Session with Some Success

    The Massachusetts Legislature finished their formal session at midnight on July 31st before taking a break. We were happy that $6 million was allocated for the MA Food Trust Program, providing necessary funding for our healthy food financing initiatives in the Economic Development Bond Bill. We will...
  • Blog Post: Summit Focuses on Advancing Million Hearts in Rhode Island

    A state summit was held on August 9 th entitled “Advancing Million Hearts: American Heart Association and Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Partners Working Together in Rhode Island.” The purpose of the meeting was to connect the American Heart Association, Rhode Island Department of...
  • Blog Post: Governor Raimondo Signs AEDs in Schools Bill into Law

    On July 6 th , Governor Gina Raimondo signed into law a bill that will require AEDs in all public and private middle and high schools in the state. AEDs will also be required at school-sponsored athletic events and someone trained in the use of the AED must also be present. This bill was championed by...
  • Blog Post: NYC's PE Report Card is Due This Month!

    A lot of exciting things have happened in New York City schools over the past year. But we're really proud of one achievement. Thanks to our You're the Cure advocates and the leadership of Mayor de Blasio and New York City Council, we are soon going to see certified PE teachers in every elementary...
  • Blog Post: AHA Hosts Summer Meeting of DASH-NY

    On July 28 th , the AHA hosted a summer steering committee meeting of DASH-NY. Like me, you may be unfamiliar with the acronym, so I will end the suspense: it stands for Designing A Strong and Healthy New York. What is most impressive, however, is what DASH-NY stands up for: ending the obesity epidemic...
  • Blog Post: Mock Vending is Causing a Buzz!

    We have been working on a healthy vending bill to requiring State Buildings to have healthier options in their vending machines. We put on display “mock vending machines” and it created a buzz. I have included the State House News Article below Examining the contents of a mock vending...
  • Blog Post: AED Advocates Stormed the State House

    A group of dedicated advocates came to the State House to lobby for a bill that would require automated external defibrillators in Schools. The advocates are so passionate because they unfortunately lost a child because when they suffered sudden cardiac arrest a defibrillator was not available. You could...
  • Blog Post: July Means Healthier Eating Statewide

    One of the great things that happened when you flipped your calendar on July 1 st was that that’s the day the state of Vermont began requiring state agencies to meet nutrition standards for the foods they sell and serve. And you’re part of the reason! We advocated this past legislative...
  • Blog Post: Imagine Getting a Healthy Kids Meal Anywhere

    Imagine going out to eat with your family and knowing that any restaurant you chose that had a kids’ meal would offer some nice, healthy choices. Any restaurant. That’s what we’re striving for. But that’s not the case currently. Today, due to work demands and hectic school...
  • Blog Post: Portland Passes Tobacco 21- First in the State!

    On June 20, Portland became Maine’s first municipality to take the next step to keep all harmful tobacco products out of the hands of our children. Portland City Council unanimously agreed to an ordinance change that will raise the age to purchase tobacco to 21. American Heart Association volunteers...
  • Blog Post: Lunch and Learn with a Side of Sunshine

    I spend most of my work time striving to reduce heart disease and stroke through changing statewide policies in Maine. Even when the legislature is out of session, the work does not cease. Maine’s American Heart Association Advocacy Committee analyzes Maine’s current landscape for policy...
  • Blog Post: Rhode Island Advocates Celebrate Successful Legislative Session

    The 2016 RI Legislative Session wrapped up on June 18th. Lawmakers passed hundreds of bills in the frenzied final days of session. Thanks to the passion, commitment and advocacy of our You’re the Cure advocates, we are celebrating a very successful year at the State House! Below is a quick recap...
  • Blog Post: American Heart Association Highlights Partnership with Providence Public School District

    We are very excited to share a new report entitled “Providence Teachers Learn How to Get Kids Moving” that highlights our recent work with the Providence Public School District (PPSD). This work was part of the American Heart Association’s Accelerating National Community Health Outcomes...
  • Blog Post: Advocacy Victories in the Commonwealth

    We are excited that with the end of our fiscal year that we have a lot of advocacy wins to celebrate. This was a true team effort that could not be achieved without your support of our work, taking action on alerts, being part of lobby day, and you, our dedicated volunteers being tireless advocates throughout...
  • Blog Post: Dina Plapler, Connecticut

    Dina Plapler has been an advocate and supporter of the fight against heart disease and stroke for much of her professional career. Serving as the AHA’s Executive Director of the CT and Western MA markets for the past two years, and now taking on a new role of a Senior Advisor, Mission Advancement...
  • Blog Post: Learning CPR in Schools

    Nearly 383,000 people have cardiac arrest outside of a hospital every year, and only 11% survive, most likely because they don’t receive timely CPR. Given right away, CPR doubles or triples survival rates. Teaching students CPR could save thousands of lives by filling our community with lifesavers...
  • Blog Post: First Major City To Pass Sugary Drink Tax Is..

    Earlier this month, Philadelphia became the first major U.S. city to pass a sugary drink tax, scoring a significant win for kids and public health- while defeating a very formidable opponent, Big Soda, which spent millions of dollars trying to defeat the proposal. The City Council has approved a budget...
  • Blog Post: Healthier Choices Just Around the Corner!

    The Healthy Small Food Retailer Act has made it through the Legislature in late June and is now on Governor Christie's desk! This bill would provide state support for programs that assist small corner stores and bodegas with offering healthy food for sale, such as the NJ Healthy Corner Store Initiative...
  • Blog Post: Advocacy Staff Attends Policy Summit in Minneapolis!

    The last week of June was a busy one for myself, Robin (NYC) and Patricia (Boston). The three of us spent a few days in Minneapolis at a Voices For Healthy Kids Policy Summit, where we discussed campaign work around Healthy Food Financing Initiatives, Physical Education, and Complete Streets. We met...