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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

NYU: Effects of State Preemption on Democracy, Essential Regulation, and Public Health

An editorial co-authored by Ms. Jennifer L. Pomeranz, assistant professor of public health policy and management with New York University College of Global Public Health, was published in the American Journal of Public Health titled “State Preemption: Threat to Democracy, Essential Regulation, and Public Health.”

The paper defines preemption as an occurrence when a higher level of government removes or limits the authority of a lower level of government to act on a particular issue or across issues. In presenting five arguments to counter pro-preemption, this editorial concludes that “modern preemption represents the convergence of industry-sponsored deregulation and an undermining of local democracy, with potentially dangerous consequences for public health. State legislatures have gone so far as to eliminate their own ability to act on a wide range of issues while preempting local control over these same issues. States also have enacted punitive preemptive measures under which local governments and officials can be subject to civil and even criminal penalties for adopting legislation that may be contrary to state law. Stakeholders and advocates across public health topic areas can work together to present a stronger opposition to preemption and support minimum standards that strengthen the health of all communities.”

Read Ms. Jennifer Pomeranz’s editorial.

Ms. Pomeranz was also interviewed on the topic by WAMC Northeast Public Radio and provided further analysis in a report by Courthouse News Service on how a 2018 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court has far-reaching consequences for government regulations and public health.