Division of
Public Health

College of Human Medicine


The edible flint Local Food Collaborative serves Flint residents in growing & accessing healthy, local food. As part of their strategic planning process, a series of surveys, focus groups, and key informant interviews were conducted to understand how people see edible flint in the community, and where it can grow. This information is immensely important to local food activities in the Flint community.


Dr. Lenwood Hayman

Growing out of the efforts of many different actors in the local food system, work is now underway to create both a mobile market and a growers’ collaborative. A participatory mapping exercise has been conducted to help frame where the mobile market might locate. We continue to work toward reinvigorating a version of the former edible flint Cooperative Work Group.


Dr. Katherine Alaimo

In partnership with MSU Extension, we are developing a platform to connect consumers with healthy, local food through direct, personalized messaging. We will capitalize on partnerships in Flint’s local food network to populate the platform with local food vendors and healthy eating messaging, and provide a virtual community for sharing information about local food.


Dr. Josh Introne

Dr. Ashley Sanders-Jackson

Erin Powell

Alongside other preliminary mapping, a 2012 food store assessment by MSU Food Science & Human Nutrition helped illustrate the challenges Flint has around food access. The updated survey—completed using the Nutrition Environment Measurement Survey (NEMS)—will provide a comprehensive spatial view of food access and feed into a local food map.


Dr. Laura Carravallah

Dr. Andy Jones

Alex Hill

Many partners in Flint have taken action to reduce blight on previously unmaintained properties, including community organizations through the Genesee County Land Bank. This research examines spatial relationships between the intensity of ‘greening’ these properties and changes in neighborhood perceptions & objective changes in criminal behavior.


Dr. Stephen Gasteyer

Dr. Jesy Pizarro

Natalie Pruett

Many of Flint’s challenges—including the chain of events that ultimately precipitated the Flint Water Crisis—can trace their roots to a history of discrimination in housing and other elements of daily life. This research illustrates how public policy and personal choices made by those in power set the stage for urban decline well before the economic changes that caused jobs to leave the city.


Dr. Andrew Highsmith

Dr. Don Lafreniere

A pre-existing partnership with the Hurley Children’s Hospital proved a critical link in uncovering the blood lead implications of the Flint Water Crisis. Continued work is aimed at connecting environmental determinants of these blood lead levels to aid in further public health response, as well as connecting pediatric clinic visitors to healthy eating at the Flint Farmers’ Market.


Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha

Dr. Shawn McElmurry

Jenny LaChance

FACHEP is a team led by Wayne State researchers specializing in environmental engineering and public health conducting an independent study to evaluate the possible association between changes in Flint’s water system and public health, specifically the recent Legionnaires’ disease outbreak.

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