Jim Boat  
 Making the healthy choice, the easy choice!
 Healthy Portland is a coalition of health care organizations, nonprofit agencies, schools, law enforcement, and community members. The coalition's purpose is to create lasting changes in our community that reduce tobacco use, increase physical activity, promote healthy eating, and prevent underage drinking and substance abuse through implementation of policy, systems and environmental changes.  
In This Issue
Helping Stop the Summer Slide
Tobacco Litter Campaign
New Tobacco Ordinances
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September 2013

The aim of the Healthy Portland Newsletter is to keep you  informed on our projects, as well as health-related events and happenings in the city. If you prefer not to receive the newsletter, please reply to unsubscribe from our mailing list. 


Helping Stop the Summer Slide on Learning and Nutrition for Portland Kids and Teens

This past summer, Healthy Portland worked closely with many partners across the City to improve summer learning and nutrition for school aged kids in Portland.  Coordinated by Portland Public Schools and Portland ConnectED, many partners throughout the community engaged in efforts to organize events at meal sites to help promote participation in the Free Summer Meals program.  Our nutrition education team was able to connect with over 200 kids to improve their knowledge about healthy eating and physical activity. Not only were we able to connect directly with youth, but participation in the Free Summer Meals program doubled since summer 2012.


Click here for more photos! 



As with all efforts, much work remains in front of us. Although we have the capacity to feed 100% of eligible kids and teens through the Summer Meals Program, only 20% of those eligible participate in the program. 

Based on the successful coordination and collaboration of community partners we saw this summer, it appears within our ability to make nutritious summer meals a routine for Portland kids and teens. 


WCSH came to one of our events. You can watch the story here: Celebrating Portland stops kids from going down "summer slide"





Portland Awarded Medals Recognizing Achievements in Addressing Childhood Obesity through Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties


Portland, ME - The National League of Cities (NLC) has recognized Mayor Michael Brennan for recent completion of key health and wellness goals for Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC).   LMCTC is a major component of First Lady Michelle Obama's comprehensive Let's Move! initiative, which is dedicated to solving the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation. 


"Local elected officials play a critical role in addressing childhood obesity in our country and communities, and we commend those leaders being recognized for their achievements in taking action to improve healthy eating and physical activity in their communities," said NLC President Marie Lopez Rogers, mayor of Avondale, AZ. 


Four medals were awarded to Portland for action taken to improve access to healthy affordable food and increase opportunities for physical activity.  These medals were awarded because of Portland's achievements in Goal I, Goal II, Goal III, and Goal V.


All LMCTC sites have the opportunity to earn up to five gold medals, one for each actionable goal they commit to as part of the initiative. The five goal areas are:


  • Goal I: Start Early, Start Smart: Promoting best practices for nutrition, physical activity, and screen time in early care and education settings
  • Goal II: My Plate, Your Place: Prominently displaying MyPlate in all municipal or county venues where food is served
  • Goal III: Smart Servings for Students: Increasing participation in school breakfast and lunch programs
  • Goal IV: Model Food Service: Implementing healthy and sustainable food service guidelines that are aligned with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
  • Goal V: Active Kids at Play: Increasing opportunities for physical activity


The National League of Cities (NLC) is the lead collaborating partner on this initiative, working with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Association of Counties, and other nonprofit organizations, in assisting local elected officials to implement policy and environmental changes to prevent childhood obesity.  The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded NLC a grant to provide technical assistance to local elected officials working to create healthier communities and prevent childhood obesity, including sites participating in LMCTC.


More than 340 cities, towns and counties are participating in LMCTC. Each month, NLC recognizes local elected officials who achieve key benchmarks for the five LMCTC goals. To date, NLC has awarded 1,072 bronze, silver, and gold medals to recognize local elected officials across the country for their progress.


For more information about LMCTC and Portland's accomplishments, visit www.HealthyCommunitiesHealthyFuture.org.


The National League of Cities is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.


Portland Reviews New Tobacco Ordinances

On August 23, 2013 a workgroup assembled at the Portland Downtown District to evaluate and discuss the impact of two city ordinances that went into effect earlier this year. The workgroup consisted of representatives from Healthy Portland, the Portland Police Department, Portland's Downtown District, City of Portland Park Rangers, and Corporation Counsel.


The City of Portland, with support from Healthy Portland and Public Works, launched the smoke-free parks and open spaces ordinance in March, followed by a tobacco litter ordinance in June. The workgroup considered several elements of the ordinances' implementation, including communication to the public, enforcement, reactions from citizens and the business community, and ways to increase voluntary compliance. The group also looked at the number of warnings and citations given by police cadets, and the amount of fines collected.


Lead Park Ranger Nathan Robbins said overall, the reaction from people in parks has been positive with little push-back. He said rangers encourage people to smoke outside the boundaries of the park, and when smokers are asked to extinguish a cigarette while inside a park, they are also asked to either throw it out or carry it out to avoid littering.


Community Services Sergeant Andrew Hutchings said the public's initial reaction to the ordinances was strong in both directions. Hutchings said that 2013 has been the "quietest summer on record" in the parks, and attributes the decrease in criminal misdemeanors in Tommy's Park, Post Office Park and Congress Square to the smoke-free parks and tobacco litter ordinances. He says that because the police cadets gave early warnings followed by written citations, people got the message early on that the ordinances were going to be enforced and went somewhere else to smoke.

Police cadets began enforcing the ordinances in the Old Port area and on Congress Street in late June. Total, they issued over 300 written warnings and 5 citations for smoking in city parks. Trish McAllister, Neighborhood Prosecutor and Corporation Counsel said four of those cases have gone to court, and there is $250 in outstanding fines awaiting adjudication.


Representatives from Portland's Downtown District echoed Sergeant Hutchings' sentiment, saying that businesses in the Old Port area near Tommy's Park reported much less criminal behavior than in years past. They also recalled previous concerts in Monument Square where smoking near the beer garden was ubiquitous. This year they reported a dramatic decrease in smoking and also in the amount of tobacco litter on the ground.


The group indicated its belief that voluntary compliance could be improved by placing more signs in high traffic areas, and by working individually with businesses that experience people smoking near their doors. The group plans to continue evaluating the impact of the ordinances quarterly while implementing recommendations for improvement on an ongoing basis.


Remember to Return Your Passport to Play

Reminder! Summer has come to an end and it's time to turn in your Passport to Play. All returned and completed Passports will be entered in a drawing to win a custom fit bike! 

You can return your Passport in any of the following drop box locations.

City Hall Rotunda 
Portland Parks and Rec. 
Any Branch of the Portland Public Library 
Healthy Portland