About the Brown School

The Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis provides leadership in social work and public health, two complementary professions aimed at creating healthy and productive individuals and communities. Offering a top-ranked Master of Social Work program, an innovative Master of Public Health Program, and doctoral degrees in Social Work and in Public Health Sciences, the […]

Protect emotional well-being of young people

December 15, 2016St. Louis Post Dispatch – Opinion According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, there have been over 800 incidents of hateful harassment since the election. Young people are vulnerable to the contentiousness that continues, particularly youth of color. Source: http://www.stltoday.com/opinion/columnists/protect-emotional-well-being-of-young-people/article_1b5205de-1547-590b-af84-e1ec884a4398.html

Supporting the Young, Gifted and at Risk

December 5, 2016 Researchers, practitioners, community members and students from across the United States convened at the Brown School, Nov. 11, to share information and discuss the challenges to the mental health and emotional well-being of college students of color. Source: http://www.stevefund.org/ygar-2016/

Science, Empirical Data Must Guide Future Health Care Policy Decisions

November 10, 2016 “Countless studies have demonstrated that the lack of proper health care correlates to reduced life expectancy and increased health disparities,” McKay said. “It is our duty as social workers and public health professionals to advocate for the use of science and empirical data to guide future policy initiatives and legislation to improve […]

Public Health and Social Work in the Political Process

October 28, 2016 Sarah Moreland-Russell, Clark Fox Policy Institute Senior Scholar, recounts her experience as the American Health Association’s Public Health Fellow in Government in Washington, D.C. As a congressional staffer for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York), Moreland-Russell had a chance-of-a-lifetime opportunity to work directly on federal policymaking. Source: https://publichealth.wustl.edu/public-health-social-work-political-process/

Home Delinquency Rates are Lower Among Households in the Affordable Care Act Marketplace

Photo of child wearing a pink headband playing with a toy stethascope. Text reads: Home delinquency rates are lower with ACA. CFPI news

January 12, 2017 A new study, “Home Delinquency Rates Are Lower Among ACA Marketplace Households: Evidence from a Natural Experiment,” published through the Brown School’s Center for Social Development, shows that families who get health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are  more likely to make their rent and mortgage payments than are those […]

Brown School statement on immigration executive order

Smiling young Black woman wearing white hijab and holding a notebook. Text reads: Brown School statement on Immigration Executive order. CFPI news

January 30, 2017 Brown School Dean Mary McKay issues statement on the impact of the immigration executive order and reiterates the School’s commitment for advancing equity and social change. Source: https://brownschool.wustl.edu/News/Pages/Brown-School-Statement-on-Immigration-Executive-Order.aspx

St. Louis Mayoral Forum 2017

A photo of mayoral candidates sitting on stage for the mayoral forum

February 22, 2017 The City of St. Louis is preparing to elect a new mayor for the first time in 16 years. The Clark-Fox Policy Institute co-sponsored a mayoral forum that allowed concerned voters to hear directly from the candidates on issues facing the City. Held at The Sheldon before a standing room only crowd, […]

St. Louis leaders discuss upcoming mayoral election, issues facing the region

A photo of Tom Irwin in front of the arch

February 27, 2017 A trio of St. Louis political and business leaders talked about economic and racial issues surrounding the April 4 St. Louis mayoral election, the first in 16 years not to feature current Mayor Francis Slay. The panel was co-hosted by the Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement and the Clark-Fox Policy […]

Advocates push for prioritizing a fully funded Affordable Housing Trust Fund over new stadium

A headshot of Molly Metzger

March 21, 2017 Debate over funding of a new soccer stadium in St. Louis continues with a discussion about the need for affordable housing. “The Affordable Housing Trust Fund is a tool the city has to improve neighborhoods, households and the families that reside in them,” Karl Guenther said. Advocates who oppose Proposition 1 (a 0.05% use […]

Students Engage in Policy Practice on Capitol Hill

US Capitol Bldg. Text reads: Students Engage in Policy Practice on Capitol Hill. CFPI news

March 29, 2017 With Capitol Hill as their classroom, 23 Brown School students spent Spring Break immersed in policy education and training in Washington, D.C.  Throughout the week, they learned from a variety of policy practitioners and government officials working on issues connected to the Brown’s School’s core mission of advancing social change through education, […]

The Earned Income Tax Credit and the white working class

Man with hardhat leaning against wall. Text reads: The Earned Income Tax Credit and the white working class. CFPI News

April 18, 2017 In a recent blog post, the Brookings Institution outlines the broad-reaching benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), particularly how it crosses race and education lines, as well as rural and urban boundaries. Since it’s creation in 1975, the EITC has gained bi-partisan support and has shown to reduce poverty, encourage […]

Missouri Senate votes to fully fund the School Foundation Formula

a yellow school bus

April 25, 2017 For the first time since 2005, the school foundation formula will be fully funded. This will allow state funding to be allocated to previous legislation such as the PreK law of 2014. This legislation provides that schools can receive state funding for up to four percent of their at-risk three and four-year-olds […]

New guidelines for smart decarceration offer concrete strategies for policymakers

headshot of pettus davis

May 3, 2017 “As the era of mass incarceration appears to be coming to an end, promoting smart decaraceration in the United States requires deliberate action,” said Pettus-Davis, assistant professor and director of the Institute for Advancing Justice Research and Innovation. Pettus-Davis is co-author of “Guideposts for the Era of Smart Decarceration: Smart Decarceration Strategies for Practitioners, […]

Uninsured breast cancer patients more likely to die

Black woman holding an image of breasts. Text reads: Insurance increases survival. CFPI news

May 8, 2017 Uninsured women with breast cancer were nearly 2.6 times more likely to have a late stage diagnosis than cancer patients who were insured, finds a new study from Kimberly Johnson, associate professor at the Brown School. The study, “Breast Cancer Stage Variation and Survival in Association with Insurance Status and Sociodemographic Factors in […]

St. Louis voters approved $5 million for affordable housing, but budget routinely falls short

Image of father and daughter looking into a dollhouse. Text reads: affordable housing budget. CFPI news

May 22, 2017 St. Louis is on track to underfund the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund for the sixth straight year, despite a $5 million minimum annual allocation voters passed in 2002. This comes about a month after voters approved a half-cent sales tax increase for public transit and affordable housing. Washington University assistant professor Molly […]

Some ACA costs are offset by societal savings linked to fewer home delinquencies

June 13, 2017 Low-income people who gain health insurance are much more likely to make their rent and mortgage payments, according to a new Washington University study of families living near the poverty line. Lead researcher Emily Gallagher, with the Center for Social Development (CSD), says “the spin-off benefits to the community may offset a substantial share […]

Senate plan is biggest cut yet to health-care safety net

June 26, 2017 Timothy McBride, professor at the Brown School and co-director of the Center for Health Economics and Policy, expects that the bill will lead to over 24 million people being uninsured and very large, perhaps devastating, cuts to the Medicaid program, which currently covers about 75 million children, disabled, aged and other adults. Source: https://source.wustl.edu/2017/06/washu-expert-senate-health-care-plan-will-dramatically-increase-uninsured/

Parker Leads Community Discussion on Communications and Social Justice

Gary Parker sitting on a stage moderating a panel

On January 20, 2018, Gary Parker, Associate Dean of External Affairs and Director of the Clark-Fox Policy Institute at the Brown School, moderated a panel discussion hosted by the Community Service Public Relations Council (CSPRC) titled Aligning Our Work with Action: Communicating During Times of Unrest and Uncertainty. Parker led the group through a conversation […]

Three questions on economic insecurity with Mark Rank

August 21, 2017 Rank and Hirschl are the authors of Chasing the American Dream: Understanding What Shapes Our Fortunes, which uses the Panel Study of Income Dynamics — the longest-running longitudinal household survey in the world — to paint a picture of income inequality in the United States. Using the same data, the two created a poverty risk calculator that […]

School health clinics are growing in number in St. Louis region 

August 23, 2017 Research has shown that poor health is a barrier to student learning, is associated with lower grades and is a common reason why students miss school or drop out. School-based health clinics such as Normandy’s are one of a number of ways educators are seeking to address not just their students’ educational needs, […]

Missouri Children’s Leadership Council advocacy efforts bring policy efforts to federal attention

August 30, 2017 Last week, Rep. Kathy Swan (R-147, Cape Girardeau) wrote an OpEd urging Congress to reauthorize and fund the Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting program (MIECHV). You can read Rep. Swan’s OpEd here. Additionally, Dana Carroll, Springfield’s Child Advocate, had a letter to the editor published asking congress to act before CHIP funding expires […]

Sheretta Butler-Barnes: Equity in Education

September 12, 2017 In summer 2017, Assistant Professor Sheretta Butler-Barnes continued her work with the Girls Inc. Eureka! Program, which exposes high school girls of color to an intensive STEM-based curriculum. Her research addresses structural racism and inequalities in education and youth development.

Disparities in educational experiences of black youth

September 20, 2017 A more comprehensive picture of mental health that includes subjective well-being and other positive mental health characteristics could lead to more successful educational experiences among black youth, finds a recent study from the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. “We demonstrated the need to use a dual-factor model of mental health […]

WashU Expert: CHIP demise devastating to millions of American children

October 5, 2017 An estimated 9 million children are now covered by the CHIP program across the U.S. In Missouri, more 624,000 children are covered by a combination of CHIP and Medicaid, though most children are covered by Medicaid. “CHIP has led to a substantial reduction in the uninsured rate for children, to the point […]

Washington People: Sheretta Butler-Barnes

October 25, 2017 Sheretta Butler Barnes, assistant professor in the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, focuses her research on structural racism and inequalities in education. In this video, she talks about her motivation and her work, including a program to encourage girls of color in STEM subjects.

Congressional briefing on human trafficking includes Washington University presence

A photo of a class in front of the capitol building in DC

November 16, 2017 The Clark-Fox Policy Institute (CFPI) at the Brown School and the Human Trafficking Collaborative Network (HTCN), a multidisciplinary group housed in the university’s Institute for Public Health, brought to Capitol Hill a delegation of Missouri researchers, advocates, law enforcement representatives, service providers and survivors to bring attention to the dehumanizing industry of […]

Legislator files bill aimed at protecting Missouri kids receiving CHIP

December 4, 2017 State Rep. Cora Faith Walker, D-Ferguson, has filed legislation that would require the Missouri Legislature to fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, if the federal government fails to budget money towards the program. Congress has not reapproved CHIP funding, which provides health coverage for nearly 90,000 Missouri kids. The Show-Me […]

The misunderstood social safety net

December 4, 2017 Few topics are more misunderstood than the U.S. social safety net. From Ronald Reagan’s “welfare queen” to current HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s caricature of a comfortable life in public housing, the safety net and those who use it have been routinely vilified. Research conducted by Mark R. Rank, professor of social welfare […]

Members of Missouri Medicaid panel see more cuts coming

December 13, 2017 The Missouri Medicaid Oversight Committee is facing the tall order of trying to keep ever increasing costs under control in a state with limited resources. Committee Chairman and Washington University Health Economist Timothy McBride noted state revenue gains this year of $300 million are equal to Medicaid cost increases. He told Missourinet that […]

Credit Where It’s Due: Establishing an Earned Income Tax Credit for Missouri’s Working Families in Need

The Missouri government is considering legislation that would create a state-level Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC is a refundable tax credit that benefits low- to moderate-income working individuals and couples, particularly those with children. The EITC has a proven track record of effectiveness in lifting low-income families out of poverty and improving educational […]

Bouncing Between Homes: Hypermobility and Its Impact on Children’s Education and Communities at Large

Unstable housing conditions marked by overcrowding, disrepair, and lack of affordability and safety force many low-income families to move often. There is strong evidence of a correlation between frequent residential displacement and poor educational outcomes such as grade retention, lower high school graduation rates, and lower knowledge acquisition over time. Equally troubling are the health […]