Saint Louis University Journal of Health Law & Policy

Document Type



COVID-19 has had a stark and severe impact on health, economic stability, housing, and education in communities of color in the United States. As the pandemic has unfolded, the disproportionate number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths due to COVID-19 among Black, Hispanic and Latinx, and Indigenous people has served as a stark reminder that the systems and structures that lead to these disparities need to be changed in order to achieve equitable outcomes.

This Article assesses efforts by cities, counties, states, and organizations to address the impact of COVID-19 on communities of color through formal task forces or working groups as of November 2020. This assessment includes an evaluation of approaches taken to establish the groups, group composition, and assigned duties and responsibilities. Key issues addressed include: approaches to partnership and collaboration; engagement of community leaders and strategies to include community voices; authorities and resources; accountability to policymakers and stakeholders; and a review of actions that have been recommended or implemented. Success of these working groups will be measured by near-term actions to address disparities due to COVID-19 and longer-term solutions that support post-pandemic recovery and build community resilience.