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COH318: Drug Use & Abuse: Public Health Advocacy

Find library and web resources for COH318.

Public Health Advocacy

ADVOCACY is a strategy to influence policy makers when they make laws and regulations, distribute resources, and make other decisions that affect peoples' lives. The principal aims of advocacy are to create policies, reform policies, and ensure policies are implemented

Find Policies

Created and hosted by CQ Press, the CQ Press Electronic Library (CQEL) is the definitive reference resource for research in American government, politics, history, public policy, and current affairs.

Public Policy Institute of California
Independent, objective, nonpartisan research on major social, economic, and political issues.

California Legislative Information
Locate legislative bills, laws and legislative publications for California.

National Conference of State Legislatures State Websites Directory
Connect to individual state legislatures for bills being considered in other states.

Government Resources 
Provides legislative information from the Library of Congress. Here you'll find summaries and status of bills before Congress. You can also find the text and summaries of proposed legislation, as well the actions already taken on the policy.
An independent website that makes it easy to look for bills before the current Congress.

Library Resources

Think tanks can be a great resource for research and statistics on a variety of topics, but think tanks are advocacy oriented. That a think tank refers to itself as non-partisan means that it has no formal connection to a political party, not that it doesn’t have an ideological orientation that may be more consistent with a given political party.

Policy Archive
Policy Archive is a good source for finding materials from various think tanks, including many of the ones mentioned here.

Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting categorizes the political leanings of 25 leading think tanks, and analyzes who is the most influential.

Global Go To Think Tank
The U.S. based Brookings Institute remains the most influential think tank but this 171 page report also includes ranked lists of international and US think tanks. The 2014 Global Go To Think Tank Index Report is compiled by the University of Pennsylvania's International Relations Program.

Newspapers can be helpful sources of current information about new policies. Editorials and the Op-Ed pages are particularly good places to look, because they are spaces in which people write about problems and how they might be solved.

Once you have identified a specific organization that works on your issue, you will have to go that organization's website and do some digging. Good places to look will be links to press releases about specific legislation that the organization supports. 

Remember that these press releases are NOT policies.  You will need the actual text of the actual policy. After reading a press release and identifying a current piece of legislation, you will have to go to the website of the governmental body that is considering this legislation.

C-SPAN List of Policy Organizations

Support your argument with statistics. Use FedStats or Statistical Abstracts of the United States to find raw statistics and make your own graphs or charts to show trends.

Look in newspapers, AP Images, or other resources to find graphs and charts created by others.

For more Public Health Resources in Statistics & Epidemiology, please visit our Public Health Guide