Politics, Policy and Global Health

Politics, Policy and Global Health

  1. Reflection Essay
  2. Analysis of the Policy
    • Why this Policy Was Selected

The policy of domestic wastes management has been selected because there has been an increase in the amounts of waste resulting from a number of domestic activities such as those produced in homes and environments. The health impacts of domestic waste have been tremendous on the well-being of the public. It is also estimated that the amount of domestic wastes generated is more than 177 million tons each year (Cheng & Hu, 2010). This has resulted into the concern regarding the manner in which resources aimed at managing domestic wastes are used. In addition, the amount of environmental damage resulting from domestic wastes has been significant. The landfills resulting from domestic wastes have resulted into increased degradation of the land and the untenability of the efforts aimed at preventing the pollution of the environment. Some domestic wastes have contributed to the greenhouse effect when produced from domestic activities thus affecting world climate. In addition, the increase in population in urban areas coupled with inadequate policies for the control of domestic wastes has resulted into piling up of wastes in the neighborhoods (Glassmeyer et al. 2009). However, the local authorities have not been highly involved in implementing policies aimed at addressing these challenged. There have also been increased occupations of urban spaces with solid and liquid domestic wastes thus increasing the occupation of the areas that can be used for other activities such as construction of more buildings, roads or offices.

This policy has been selected because there are huge areas in urban environment that are currently occupied by domestic wastes that if properly managed, can result into adequate space for settlement and other the creation of infrastructures that promote the quality of life. In addition, the topic of domestic wastes management is important because there has been inadequate use of various waste management practices such as the use of garbage collection bins and the disposal of wastes that can be toxic to urban residents (LaGrega, Buckingham & Evans, 2010). Thus creating policies aimed at managing wastes will contribute to the awareness of practical implementation of reduction of solid wastes in residential areas. Past cases of landfills have also resulted into much to be desired. Present proposals on domestic wastes emerge from the idea that these wastes are a source of nuisance to the environment. The main nuisance factors associated with domestic wastes include: odor, increased littering of the environment, creation of breeding places for rodents and insects that can cause health impacts to urban residents as well as act as factors of soli pollution. The resulting gases from the decomposition of domestic wastes have been a major concern due to the production of gases such as methane that affect the nearby residents.

  • Relevance of the Policy to Public Health

There have been impacts on the population such as municipal workers who have been involved in the control of domestic wastes. In addition, there have been impacts on the residents in the neighborhoods of places that have high accumulation of domestic solid wastes, liquid wastes and gases (Nnorom & Osibanjo, 2008). For instance, increased accumulation of domestic wastes is associated with health problems such as eye problems, respiratory problem and skin infections. Those who participate in activities aimed at collecting wastes and disposing them also experience a number of health impacts such as respiratory challenges due to inhalation of particles, direct infections resulting from contaminated materials that result into headache, fever and diarrhea. There has also been a growing concern regarding inadequate management of solid wastes and the manner in which they are disposed that has resulted into infection of people with a number of diseases and in some cases deaths of animals such as cows, poultry and pets that wander in the garbage in search for waste food. The wastes have a number of characteristics and are composed of toxic elements (Pichtel, 2005). In most cases, domestic animals such as cows, goats and sheep eat materials in the accumulated solid wastes resulting into their deaths. Their consumption of wastes also affects the quality of products such as meat and milk they produce. Improper management of domestic wastes and inadequate disposal measures has polluted the environment in a number of ways. It has also affected the chemical composition of water bodies and some uncollected wastes have been scattered in cost places causing a disorganization of the physical appearance of the environment. As a result of uncollected waste products accompanied by their improper disposal methods, they have been clogged and acted as breading grounds for mosquitoes, and promoting the development of diseases such as malaria (Tudor et al. 2005). The topic is also important in understanding the attitude of the government towards the disposal of solid wastes so that recommendations can be made on the manner in which these policies need to be implemented to protect residents from implications of their existence in the neighborhoods.

  • Financial Impact of the Policy in an Organization

The implementation of the policy will result into the most positive financial impacts on the organization in particular and the residents in general. For instance, the implementations of the policy will empower the management of the organization to apply its recommendations in the management of wastes thus promoting conservation of funds aimed at conservation of the environment (Vengosh et al. 2014). Another financial impact is that the policy will enhance the right allocation of funds to specific areas of environmental conservation so that funds are used to address specific issues affecting the environment such as control of domestic wastes. For instance, the policy will enable prioritization in the manner in which funds aimed at controlling domestic wastes are used such as in the purchase of waste bins that are distributed to residents thus promoting the control efforts. The policy will also enable setting aside the right funding mechanism for the control of domestic wastes by ensuring the right amounts of funds are put in place for that purpose. The new policies will enable identification of the required resources to be used by the organization so that they can address the problem of domestic wastes in the right manner.

  1. The Impact of Values on the Position for the Public Policy

The main impacts of the policy will be related to ethics pertaining to the control of domestic wastes in the environment. For instance, it will be necessary to ensure suitable living conditions are created that are free from substances that can cause discomfort and the possibility of affecting health of the residents in a particular locality (Cheng & Hu, 2010). The ethical requirement of beneficence will be achieved if the policy is implemented by enhancing the benefits to the people while reducing the possibility of causing harm to them. For instance, they will be provided with methods of managing the wastes from domestic activities with measures that ensures they are not harmed either through contamination or exposure to hazardous materials that have the potential to cause harm.

The ethics of autonomy will be achieved by the policy because the organization will be empowered to act independently in the implementation of the recommended policies without the interference from political leaders of government legislations. It will also enable the households to implement the recommendations on control of domestic wastes for the benefit of their health thus preventing reliance on the support from the environmental agencies to manage their domestic wastes (Glassmeyer et al. 2009).  In the context of the ethics of non-malfeasance, the policy will ensure the people are helped to manage domestic wastes without creating additional impacts that are detrimental to them as a result of implementation of the policy. This will be achieved by investigating the possible negative impacts of the policy and coming up with ways of addressing them. In terms of the ethical consideration of justice, the policy will be targeted towards enhancing the provision of the services to all people irrespective of their cultural background or political vies but based on the discrepancies in the manner in which people in a particular environment are addressing domestic wastes. The provision of services will generally be non-discriminatory.

  1. Policy Brief
  2. Decision Maker for the Policy

The policy change will involve incorporating practices that enable management of domestic wastes in a manner that they do not pollute the environment. The identified organization will be involved in funding, education and providing the residents of the community with information in various methods of reducing the impacts of domestic wastes in their living environments. The organization will also be involved in the study of the current practices in wastes management in the organization and establishing areas of weakness. It will then fund and spearhead the activities that promote reduction of domestic wastes from the neighborhoods. For instance, it will educate the public about measures that are relevant in reducing the impacts of wastes such as the use of bins for waste collection and proper management of dump sites.

  • Why the Policy Change Requires Decision Maker

The policy change requires the decision maker organization because it is mandated by the government to conduct research on methods of managing domestic wastes and reduce its impacts on the environment. Therefore, it will be possible for the decision maker to undertake the activities of educating the public about proper practices in managing domestic wastes as well as obtain the resources required to achieve the objectives of the policy (LaGrega, Buckingham & Evans, 2010). In addition, the organization has competent and qualified staffs that are specialized in various practices involving environmental conservation and protection of the environment from the impacts of accumulation of domestic wastes. If the professionals are mobilized to educate the public about the policy, there is a high likelihood that better practices of making changes to the policy will be applied and success will be achieved. Furthermore, the organization has been in existence for more than four decades and has undertaken various measures of managing domestic wastes. This implies that it is in a position to apply the best practices in ensuring the current processes involved in managing domestic wastes are improved. For instance, it can determine areas of weaknesses where the policy has not been effective and creating better solutions for the improvement of the policy (Nnorom & Osibanjo, 2008). In addition, the organization has been selected because it has more advanced facilities for management of domestic wastes as well as financial support from the government. This places it in a better position to improve the current policy of waste management compared with any other organization.

Furthermore, the selected organization is suitable in the creating change to the policy because it has a network of collection operations, transfer stations, disposal sites and plants used during waste management. The organization also has a number of recycling plants that can be used to recycle domestic wastes that are recyclable. It has also been involved in the provision of more than 27 million residential and municipal waste management practices in the various parts of the United States as well as Canada and Puerto Rico (Pichtel, 2005). There are advanced facilities such as vehicles that can be used to carry the wastes to the right locations where they can be transformed into less harmful forms such as when recycled or converted to less toxic forms. The selected organization has also been effective in e-recycling and management of electronics wastes such as televisions, microwave ovens, computers, and devices such as VCRs and DVDs through the practice of recycling and ensuring they are kept out of the environment or neighborhoods. This is because these products are non-biodegradable and if not properly managed can affect the environment through compilation interference with the composition of the soil that supports the growth of plants and living environment for burrowing animals. The company is also able to address the change of the policy because it operates a number of e-recycling centers in various parts of the United States by encouraging consumers to make good use of recycling practices for electronics wastes and other domestic wastes.

  1. Challenges in Addressing the Public Policy Issue

The main challenge that will be experienced in the implementation of the policy change is the unwillingness of the public and residents of the target areas to comply with the recommendations of the organizations on domestic waste management. For instance, there is the possibility that a number of residents may continue with the present practices of waste disposal despite being provided with the direction of proper management as well as the policies of the government regarding wastes disposal (Tudor et al. 2005). There is also the likelihood that the residents will have a feeling of less competent to apply the changes in the policies even if they are informed to implement them. This challenge will not be motivating to the workforce involved in the implementation of the policy change and they may be tempted to give up in implementing the change in policy. Another challenge that is likely to be experienced is inadequate funding from the government due to the belief that the current practices on domestic waste management are adequate. If the government does not provide the required resources, the organization may not be able to fund all the activities and some of the goals of change to the policy will not be achievable.

  1. Primary Options/ Interventions for the Policy

In order to implement the change of the current policy on domestic wastes management, the responsible organization will be involved in the provision of support to the residents in the areas that are necessary. For instance, they will be involved in communication with the residents regarding the increase in wastes and the need to manage them effectively. The policy change will also involve replacement of lost or stolen recycling bin or box for free (Vengosh et al. 2014). In cases where residents will have additional wastes that are recyclable, they will be provided with the contact information for the organization so that response measures can be taken to manage the wastes. Residents of the target community will also be asked to contact the organization for support at any time for the purpose of discussing additional waste requirements and an advisor will be sent to the affected residential area to enable them get a solution for the issue affecting them. Primary intervention will also include replacement of general waste bins by charging the residents a lower cost for them compared with the current $25 per bin. This will be aimed at empowering them to obtain the waste bins without the worry of the costs involved.

Another primary action that has been suggested in the change to the policy is the provision of households that have 4 or less occupants with a general waste bin of a capacity of 180 liters. If residents are involved in the use of recycling receptacles in a correct manner, they will be provided with additional capacity in case they are more than 5 occupants in a household. Residential areas that do not have gardens will not be provided with garden waste collection bins but those that have gardens but miss the bins will be provided with them (Cheng & Hu, 2010). If a property has a garden but those who occupy it need to retain additional collection bins, or participate in the collection of garden wastes, the requests will be collected and a feedback will be provided to the person in three months during the implementation of the new arrangements (Cheng & Hu, 2010). Residents will be informed to ensure they keep the receptacles of the bins clean and preventing their contamination or spillage that can result into other environmental issues. In addition, residents will be informed to promote the dumping of the right materials into the dust bins. If bins are broken, residents will be asked to contact the organization for replacement or repair where it is appropriate.

  1. Persuasive Course of Action to the Decision Maker to Avoid the Challenges

The decision maker will be persuaded to overcome the challenges by motivating them about the impact that the implementation of the policy will have on the people as well as the general sanitation. They will be advised to continue with the effort of informing the public about good practices of domestic waste management and the requirements of the policy so that the responsible persons can comply with the changes in the policy (Glassmeyer et al. 2009). This is because, if the residents are educated and advised on the right practices regarding wastes management and the implications of not complying with them, they are more likely to follow the recommendations of the organization and chances of failure of the initiative will be significantly low. Another persuasive course of action that will ensure the challenges are avoided is to provide the government with the facts about the current states of wastes management policies and the manner in which it is implemented. The government will be asked to fund the research and mobilization of residents on the changes of the policy. This persuasion will ensure the approval from the government and most activities aimed at implementing the changes to waste management policies will be implemented successfully.

  1. Evaluation Method for the Success of the Policy using (Top-Down Approach)

The success of the implementation of domestic wastes management policies will be determined by the extent to which there is effectiveness of action from the top position such as the respective department of government to the relevant residents. In the top most position, success will be determined by the extent to which the government department of health is willing to collaborate with the organization to promote domestic wastes management through the provision of funds, infrastructure and resources used to undertake the activities (LaGrega, Buckingham & Evans, 2010). It will also be determined by the extent to which the organization is using its resources and expertise to educate the residents to understand the policies regarding domestic wastes management and the manner in which research is undertaken to determine the best approach for educating the residents. It will also involve understanding whether the organization is providing the residents with the right directions on the use of bins for collection of domestic wastes and imparting waste management policies to them. Finally, the top-down approach in assessment will determine the extent to which residents are able to implement the right practices in domestic wastes management such as the use of bins and recycling practices as suggested in the changes to the policy. It will also be determined by the extent to which they are able to collaborate with the organization to follow the guidelines of waste management practices provided in the changes to the policy.

  1. Plan For Working With An Organization or Community to Address the Policy Issue
  2. The Organization That has Been Identified

The organization that has been identified to implement the changes to the policy is Waste Management Inc. that was established in the United States in 1971 and has been involved in various activities aimed at managing domestic wastes through recycling and disposal in particular locations that they contribute to little impact to the pollution of environment or causing discomfort in the areas of residence (Nnorom & Osibanjo, 2008).  The organization has been involved in the provision of environmental services to industries, municipalities and residential customers in various parts of the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

  • Evidence Showing why the Organization has Expressed Interest in the Selected Public Policy Issue

Waste Management Corporation of the United States has shown the interest in the implementation of change to the management practices for domestic wastes by enhancing protection of the environment, investment in areas such as purchase of new equipment that enable control of domestic wastes such as dustbins and setting aside sections of land aimed at depositing the wastes and preventing them from scattering in the environment or neighborhoods (Vengosh et al. 2014). The organization has also been involved in initiatives aimed at enhancing public awareness about the need to control landfills resulting from domestic wastes.

  • CBPR Principles that are Applicable in Working with the Organization to Address the Policy Issue

Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) will be important in implementing the changes to the waste management policies in a number of ways. This is the process where the organization will be involved in cooperating with the community in implementation of the recommendations suggested for the change in policies by following the principles of the CBPR (Pichtel, 2005). An example of such as principle is collaboration. This is where the focus of the activities include enhancement of cooperation of the local residents through their inclusion in the activities aimed at managing domestic wastes. In addition, the principle of equity will be applied. In this case, the activities will involve enhancing access to all areas where the change of policy need be implemented without discrimination of particular areas based on features such as accessibility or level of consensus with the community on waste management.

Furthermore, the principle of combining knowledge with social change will be applied. This is where the ideas of the local residents will be combined with those of the professionals from the organization to implement the most effective strategy of domestic wastes management.

  • Collaboration Methods with the Organization or Community

In order to collaborate with the organization and the community, the management of the organization will be informed about the current states of domestic wastes management in the residential areas and asked to implement the established policy changes to the current practices (Tudor et al. 2005). The community members will be asked to cooperate with the members of the organization in the executing various changes to the policies such as educating other residents about protection measures for enhancing the adequate collection of domestic wastes and methods of recycling or transporting them to the special places set aside for their collection.

  • How the Goal of the Organization Aligns with the Goals of the Policy

The manner in which Waste Management Inc. undertakes its activities align with those of the policy in a number of ways. For instance, the organization is involved in collection and transportation of solid wastes products from the environment using trucks and transporting them to specific locations where they can be recycled or decomposed to a less toxic form (Vengosh et al. 2014). This is in line with the goals of the policy of enhancing reduced scattering or haphazard existence of domestic wastes in living environments and neighborhoods. For instance, if the organization can implement the requirements of the policy, it can extend its efforts to provision of education to the residents on how to contact them whenever they are involved in dumping their domestic waste products.

  • Steps to be Taken to Achieve the Goals

The steps that will enable the attainment of the above goals will involve informing the organization about the new changes in the policies regarding waste management, cooperating with the members of the organization in provision of education to the residents and providing them with facilities for collection of domestic waste, educating the members of the community on methods of managing wastes such as contacting the organization when there is the need to control domestic wastes in their areas of residence and enhancing cooperation with the community in the implementation of change through their participation in the actual collection of wastes and disposing them (Cheng & Hu, 2010).

Different members of the organization will contribute towards the implementation of policy change in waste control practices in the neighborhoods of the selected residential areas. The transporters will be involved in collection of wastes from the neighborhoods to the specified collection points, the professionals in waste management will be involved in educating the residents on how to manage domestic wastes in compliance with the current policies and the management of the organization will determine the manner in which resources are set aside for the control of domestic wastes (Glassmeyer et al. 2009). They will also purchase waste bins that will be distributed to areas of residences.

An example of an element of CBPR Principle that will be applied is collaboration. This is where the researcher will collaborate with the organization to determine the specific changes in the manner in which they manage wastes are made and restructuring the manner in which the tasks are implemented to comply with the changes. Another element of CBPR will be combining knowledge for social change. This will be achieved by applying the suggestion suggestions of the local residents, those of the organization and the findings of the researcher to the strategies used in controlling wastes in the neighborhoods.

  • Evaluation of the Success of the Organization Approach Using the Bottom-up Approach

Using the bottom-up approach in evaluation of the success of the change in the policy, the activities will involve determining the extent to which those in the lowest level of policy implementation are able to implement it without being coerced or directed, followed by the level to which the organization is able to reorganize its efforts to enhance domestic waste collection and management so that the environment is kept safe from solid, liquid or gaseous wastes (LaGrega et al. 2010). The final evaluation will be the role played by the government in the implementation of the policy such as its efforts to set aside funds aimed at improving waste collection and recycling and the funds for educating the public about waste management.

  1. Strengths and Challenges of Top-Down and Bottom-up Approaches in Achieving the Policy Change
  2. Strength of Top-down Approach in the Selected Public Policy Issue

The strength of top-down approach is that it ensures the policies are enforced in situations where there are difficulties among the public to affect them. It also ensures funding are provided when the main areas  have been identified by the top leaders such as the department of government or an organization involved in the management of domestic wastes (Nnorom & Osibanjo, 2008). The weakness is that the people in residential areas are not empowered to apply their views in the control of domestic wastes. It is also bureaucratic and can take a longer duration to implement.

  1. Strength of Bottom-Up Approach in Implementing Change

The main strength of the bottom-up approach is that it promotes the participation of the people in controlling wastes by implementing contingency measures in case of inactivity of stakeholders such as the government or responsible organizations (Pichtel, 2005). The weakness of this method is that it is composed of irregularities and some residents may be reluctant to be action-oriented thus preventing the possibility of its implementation.

  1. The Most Recommended Approach in Addressing the Public Policy Issue

The most recommended approach in the management of domestic wastes is the bottom-up approach because the people are able to become responsible for their own residential conditions and take actions that promote their involvement in the sanitation and prevention of accumulation of wastes (Tudor et al. 2005). In addition, it can be affective in prevention the delays resulting from inactions from the government or responsible organization.

 

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