268. The Building Blocks of Injustice: Understanding the Complex Connections Between Race, Poverty, Hunger and Health Disparities

Sunday, October 27
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Location: 120-ABC
CE: 1.5
Level 3 – Advanced
Activity Code: 149443

Poor and minority communities bear an unequal burden from hazardous environmental exposures and agricultural waste. People of color are also more likely to live in food deserts and face issues of food insecurity. The recent water crisis in Michigan are evidence of these disparities. In alignment with the United Nations (UN) position that food and water is a human right, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics believes that all people should have access to a safe food and water supply. However, a recent report from the UN highlighted ways that the United States falls short among developed countries, contributing to racial and ethnic health disparities. This panel session will educate attendees on how race, poverty, hunger, health disparities and environmental injustice are intricately linked in the US. Attendees will gain a comprehensive understanding of these issues and learn how RDNs and nutrition professionals can play a role in advocating for positive change.

Planned with NOBIDAN Member Interest Group

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe ways race and environmental injustice have historically impacted water and food access in the US.
  • Explain at least three facts regarding the water crisis experienced by Michigan residents and its impact on racial and ethnic health disparities.
  • Outline ways to become advocates for ensuring food and water as a human right.

Learning Need Codes:

  • 4070 Food security and hunger
  • 8018 Environmental, agricultural, and technologic influences on food systems
  • 1070 Leadership, critical and strategic thinking

Performance Indicator:

  • 7.1.2 Advocates for and maintains awareness of safety policies and procedures.
  • 7.2.4 Identifies and analyzes insecurities in food and water system.
  • 8.2.5 Keeps abreast of, advocates for and integrates knowledge of national and local funding models that impact the population and services provided.


  • Alison Brown, MS, PhD

    Health Policy Science Analyst

    National Institutes of Health

  • Speaker(s)

  • Jill White, EdD, RDN, LDN

    Associate Professor Emeritas Nutrition Science

    Dominican University

  • Jill Johnston, PhD

    Assistant Professor and Director of Community Engagement

    University of Southern California

  • Winona Bynum, RDN, PMP

    Executive Director

    Detroit Food Policy Council