Mar 16

Sargent Shriver on Health

by Sargent Shriver Peace Institute | 03/16/2020 1:46PM | Quote of the Week | War on Poverty | Public Health

Sargent Shriver on Health

Sargent Shriver on Health

Our Quote of the Week centers on the importance of good health, a topic that is at the forefront of many of our thoughts, discussions, and decisions at the moment. The novel coronavirus pandemic is forcing us to pause and to consider the value of health, and the importance of robust systems to keep all residents of a community healthy.

Sargent Shriver spoke these words at the opening of a Community Health Center in Los Angeles in 1967. During his time leading the War on Poverty, Sargent Shriver made health a key component of the poverty efforts, because he knew that access to health care for all was crucial in order to create a safe, productive environment. He also knew that those who were struggling economically did not have access to health care, and to address what he considered to be an injustice such as this, he included health centers among the programs of the Office of Economic Opportunity. Today, Federally Qualified Health Centers continue to operate in communities around the country, a part of the living legacy of the War on Poverty and the Great Society. We're grateful to everyone who has continued to preserve and protect the health of our most vulnerable, particularly in moments of crisis such as the one we face right now.

As Sargent Shriver suggests in our Quote of the Week, many factors go into the health of a society; this is always true, and is particularly true in a time of crisis such as the coronavirus epidemic we're facing today. However, unless one of those factors is easy and safe easy access to health care for all who need it, particularly for those who are most vulnerable, we can never claim that we have a healthy society.

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