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WithinReach ICC Updates: COFA Migrants

[Image Right: U.S. Commodore Ben Wyatt addresses inhabitants of Bikini Atoll in 1946, moments before they were removed and relocated. (Carl Mydans/Time)]

Introducing a New Blog Category!

At WithinReach we have committed to improving overall health and health equity as one of our Strategic Direction priorities. For the last decade here at WithinReach, we have had an internal staff committee, the Intercultural Competence Committee (ICC), dedicated to recognizing, respecting, and responding to diversity within ourselves, our organization, and our community. Cultural competence at WithinReach is a commitment to promoting equity through culturally responsive evolution of behavior, policy, and organizational structure. We are working to foster awareness and appreciation of the diversity of our clients, our partners and ourselves. All policies and programs reflect WithinReach’s value of cultural responsiveness and promote health equity.

Every month we have an internal staff training and discussion on a different topic pertaining to the diversity and inclusion of different groups in our community. We hope to use this new blog category to share back with you what we, our community partners, and our leaders are learning and talking about! We are dedicated to the work that we think is important to our community.

Next week, we are looking forward to hosting this quarter’s Washington Coalition on Medicaid Outreach (WCOMO) in Federal Way with the topic of Health Insurance and accessibility for The Compact of Free Association (COFA) migrants in our community. Last year, several of our Outreach staff attended the COFA Community Forum and learned about the history of the The Compact of Free Association Treaty and history with the United States. Currently, COFA migrants are excluded from accessing federal programs like Medicaid. This quarter’s WCOMO panel will feature a discussion with Michael Itti, Executive Director, Washington State Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs (CAPAA)   and Senator Rebecca SaldaƱa, Senator from the 37th Legislative District about the current state of health care access for COFA migrants and the upcoming legislative session for bills HB 1291 and SB 5683 and what could change. 

For more information on COFA migrants and history, see below!

Comprehensive background article on the history of nuclear testing in COFA nations and present-day situation (Washington Post)

Migration history from COFA territories (Mother Jones)

The legacy of radiation exposure in Micronesia(Social Medicine)

Tags: COFA   COFA migrants   Health   Health Equity   health insurance   ICC   Intercultural Competency   

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