Producing a “top 10” list of Community Solutions publications is a dangerous undertaking. There is so much excellent content it’s hard to just pick 10 pieces. In 2019 alone we wrote 90 blog posts, not to mention 21 issue briefs and research papers. Many of them ended up on the front pages of newspapers, in television and radio stories, and shared with policy makers at every level of government. So here goes nothing, and let me know what your favorite Community Solutions publication of 2019 was.
#10 Working for Richard Sheridan : Terry Thomas provided a remembrance of the late Dick Sheridan upon the publication of the fourth edition of Follow the Money. Sheridan wasn’t only Ohio’s original budget guru, he was also a treasured colleague.
#9 Undesign the Redline: Remembering Judge Frederick Coleman : I wrote this piece after visiting an exhibit that highlighted the legacy of racial and class inequity in Cleveland. It caused me to question our own history in Cleveland and how we had over the course of our 106 years either participated in or challenged racial exclusionary policies. That led me to learn more about Frederick M. Coleman, the first elected, African-American president of Community Solutions’ board.
#8 A Lifetime of Lead Exposure : In this piece Emily Muttillo asked the question about how a lifetime of lead exposure impacts older adults living in Cleveland. She found that older adults who have lived in Cleveland homes built before 1978 for much of their adulthood have likely been exposed to low levels of lead throughout their lifetime and the result are scores of health challenges.
#7 Where’s the data? A look at data collection among the LGBTQ community : Eboney Thornton wrote about a Community Solutions event that focused on high rates of poverty in the LGBTQ community, and the importance of public benefits like Medicaid and SNAP.
#6 The Poverty Trauma Connection : Former Community Solutions colleague Rose Frech wrote that while “trauma-informed care has become more widely adopted throughout the human services field…public assistance programs like TANF and SNAP have largely not adopted a trauma-informed approach.” She asked whether states and county administrators could adopt a trauma-informed approach to administering work requirements for safety net programs?
#5 Engineering outcomes: Managed care and value-based design in Ohio Medicaid : Managed care and value-based design in Ohio. It’s hard to pick just one Loren Anthes piece on Medicaid because they are uniformly excellent, but this piece on Medicaid managed care was especially timely as the State of Ohio prepares to bid out its multibillion dollar Medicaid managed care program. It should be required reading for every Medicaid provider in the state.
#4 Poverty Speaks : This series represented a joint effort by Community Solutions and The Council for Economic Opportunities in Greater Cleveland, led by Emily Campbell. The idea was to hear directly from low-income, Cuyahoga County residents about the issues and challenges they face.
#3 The Status of Ohio’s Women by County : This first of its kind project in Ohio, led by Melissa Federman with data assists from Joe Ahern and Kate Warren, reviewed gender-based data for all 88 of Ohio’s counties. The report grew out of the conviction that any effort to improve the economic, educational or health status of women will pay dividends across a range of social challenges.
#2 Preview of the 2020-2021 Cuyahoga County Budget : Over the course of several years now Will Tarter has developed expertise around health and human services issues in the county budget. This piece written by Tarter provided a valuable preview of the county budget process and highlighted a number of issues that would need to be addressed by the county executive and county council.
#1 Is it cheating to wrap four pieces together, and count them as one? Maybe, but Kate Warren’s excellent essays on the impact of racism in Cleveland grew out of a series of infographics she developed at the end of 2018 are worth another look. She wrote a series of briefs on infant mortality, juvenile justice, education, criminal justice and how Cleveland can close its racial income and wealth gap.