Alaska Collaborative on Health and the Environment

Nurses in the Halls of Power: The why, what, and how of nurse advocacy for safer chemicals.

This podcast recorded Wednesday, February 6, 2013

About the call:

Nurses in the Halls of Power: The why, what, and how of nurse advocacy for safer chemicals was presented by Alaska Collaborative on Health and the Environment (CHE-AK) on 2/6/2013.

Nurses are becoming increasingly engaged in environmental health issues, such as chemical policy reform. They are concerned about preventing diseases of environmental origin, but may lack the expertise to effectively advocate for change. Nurses that are both informed about environmental and public health problems, and empowered to effectively influence market and government policies, can be a powerful force to vastly improve public health. In this presentation we will provide a brief overview of market and government chemical policies currently being considered, and explore how nurses can utilize advocacy tools to advance public health protections.


Katie HuffllingKatie Huffling, RN, MS, CNM is a Certified Nurse-Midwife and is the Director of Programs at the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments. Ms. Huffling works with nurses and national nursing organizations on a variety of environmental health issues including chemical policy, inclusion of environmental health into nursing education, and sustainable healthcare. She is the author of a number of peer-reviewed articles on environmental health issues as they relate to pregnancy and has developed an environmental health assessment tool used in a number of OB/GYN practices around the country that assesses for exposures in women. Ms. Huffling was a 2011 Reach the Decision Makers fellow at the University of California San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment.

Kathy CurtisKathy Curtis is executive director of Clean and Healthy New York, which promotes safer chemicals, a sustainable economy and a healthier world. She has over two decades of experience in the environmental health movement, and is a widely recognized national leader. She is on the steering committee of the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, and coordinates ANHE’s Policy and Advocacy Workgroup. Kathy leads the Alliance for Toxic-free Fire Safety, working to replace toxic chemical flame retardants with safer methods. She co-coordinates the JustGreen Partnership, a coalition of 50 groups representing a million New Yorkers. She leads the Coming Clean Collaborative’s Policy Workgroup, a forum on local, state, national, international and market policy
that protects people from toxic chemicals.



  • Clean and Healthy New York
  • Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments
    • eTextbook: Are you new to environmental health or looking to expand your knowledge? Are you a nursing educator or researcher? Our eTextbook provides the latest Environmental Health information – peer-reviewed and written by experts.
    • Life Cycles: Environmental exposures can have different health impacts across the lifecycle. Discover how environmental exposures can impact human health across the lifecycle – from prenatal through old age.
    • Hazards: An A-Z resource on environmental hazards andhuman health effects, and tools for assessing exposures.
    • E-PubHub: Compendium of environmental health articles written by nurses.
    • Resources: Your one stop shop for environmental health assessment tools, handouts, presentations, videos, and more
    • Research: Here’s where nursing researchers can connect with each other, discover current focus areas in environmental health nursing research, stay abreast of funding opportunities, and participate in the research workgroup of ANHE. (more…)

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Recent CHE-AK Calls now available as podcasts:

Podcast: The Toll of Alaska’s Coal: Health Impacts of Coal Export

Podcast: Pollution from Pesticides: How Transnational Chemical Corporations Violate Basic Human Rights

PodcastThe Unnatural History of Breasts:  Industrial Chemicals, Breast Cancer, & Early Puberty

PodcastPreventing Harm to Children – The Healthy Schools Movement

PodcastProtecting Public Health in Alaska – The Opportunity of Safe Chemicals Act