Second Annual Fall Ethics Symposium

Environmental Justice and Health Care Access

This year's topic focuses on the very timely and important challenges facing too many communities in California: the problem of limited access to health care coupled with the health-debilitating effects of environmental pollution and degradation. Our panel of experts will speak to the various dimensions of this problem and will propose useful ways of working toward some equitable solutions.

The Symposium will be a half day event, scheduled for Tuesday, October 9th, 2007. It will be held on the campus of our Institutional Co-Sponsor, Cosumnes River College, in the Recital Hall.

Directions to CRC and Campus Map (pdf)

Official Program

Tuesday, October 9th , 2007

8:30-9:00 a.m. Reception (Light refreshments served.)
9:00-9:15 Opening Remarks
Dr. Francisco Rodriguez, President, Cosumnes River College
Dr. Alexander Gonzalez, President, Sacramento State University (tentative)
Dr. Rick Schubert, Symposium Co-Director, Cosumnes River College, Dept of Philosophy
Dr. Christina M. Bellon, Director, Center for Practical and Professional Ethics 

9:15-10:20 a.m. Session I
Rey Léon, Executive Director, Latino Environmental Advancement and Policy Project
“Farm Worker Health and Environmental Justice”

Dr. Carlos Sanchez, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, San Jose State University
“Cultural (In)Competence, Justice, and Expectations of Care”

10:30-11:50 a.m. Session II
Dr. Becky White, (RN, PhD), Professor of Philosophy, California State University, Chico, and
Jeanne Ertle, Butte County Coordinator, OneCareNOW 
“Healthcare Access: Reality vs. Justice”

Meet Our Speakers

Rey Léon is the Executive Director of the Latino Environmental Advancement and Policy Project, and former Senior Policy Analyst for the Latino Issues Forum, and has been active in the advancement of legislation and policy initiatives to improve the health and well-being of the residents of the San Joaquin Valley . His expertise includes the health effects of environmental degradation in the San Joaquin Valley, with special focus on air and water quality. He has also written and spoken widely on the particular vulnerability of poor and migrant Latino communities to the damaging health effects of environmental pollution, and on the disparate burden these communities bear in some of the more questionable efforts to remedy this environmental degradation.

Carlos Alberto Sanchez (Ph.D., Philosophy, University of New Mexico) is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at San Jose State University. His current interests include Existentialism, Phenomenology, Social and Political Philosophy, and Latin American Philosophy.  The 2006 recipient of the American Philosophical Association's Prize in Latin American Thought, and beneficiary of the 2006 United States Department of Education's Council for Opportunity in Education " TRIO Achievers Award," his publications include "Jorge Portilla's Phenomenology: Relajo, Gelassenheit, and Liberation," (APA Newsletter on Hispanic/Latino Issues in Philosophy" and "From Ortega y Gasset to Mexican Existentialism: The Search for a Philosophic Conception of Chicano Identity," (Southwest Philosophical Studies). 

Becky Cox White (Ph.D., Philosophy, Rice University and R.N., Mary Lanning Memorial Hospital School of Nursing) is a Professor of Philosophy and Bioethics Project Director at the Center for Applied and Professional Ethics (CAPE) at California State University, Chico. She specializes in Ethical Theory and Biomedical Ethics, areas that first engaged her interest when she was working as a critical care nurse. In addition to her books, Competence to Consent (Georgetown University Press) and Moral Dilemmas in Community Health Care: Cases and Commentaries (Longman), Prof. White has published a numerous articles in the areas of informed consent, the role of professional integrity in health care allocation, aid-in-dying, and moral decision making, including  "Why Nurses Need to Think about Assisted Suicide." (with J. A. Zimbelman,  Journal of Professional Nursing), "Decision-making Power of Patient." (Medicine and Philosoph), and "Abandoning Informed Consent: An Idea Whose Time Has Not Yet Come." (with J. A. Zimbelman, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy).

Jeanne Ertle (BA, Latin American Studies, San Diego State University) is Butte County Coordinator for OneCareNOW a campaign in support of a single payer healthcare system in California and Board Member of the Butte County Health Care Coalition. Winner of the 1989 Housing Advocate of the Year San Diego Housing Commission Shelter Award, she has served the public as Executive Director of San Diego Neighbor to Neighbor, Executive Director of the Catholic Diocese of San Diego and Imperial Counties Office for Justice and Peace, Board Member and Steering Committee Member of the Butte County Health Care Coalition, Organizing Committee Member and Program Coordinator for the San Diego Interfaith Housing Foundation, Chair of the Emerging Issues Committee of the Peace and Justice Commission of the San Diego Catholic Diocese and Chair of the San Diego Housing Trust Fund Coalition.