May 2021 Newsletter

May Research Briefs

May 4: Motorcycle Fatality Rates Due to Head Injuries are Lower in States with Helmet Laws
Author(s): Mary “Emmy” Helander

May 11: 
Rates of Anxiety and Depression are High among Young Adults during COVID-19
Author(s): Xiaoyan Zhang

May 18: 
Building Back Healthier: The Role of Public Health in State Disaster Recovery Law
Author(s): Claire Pendergrast, Nicole Errett

May 20How Should We Set Pandemic Capacity Limits for Restaurants and Bars?
Author(s): Eric A. Schiff

May 25Food Insecurity among Military and Veteran Families
Author(s): Colleen Heflin

In the News

Professor douglas wolf

Doug Wolf was interviewed by CNY Central about his study with Shannon Monnat and Jennifer Karas Montez finding that raising minimum wage could save lives.


professor kevin heffernan

Kevin Heffernan was a recipient of a 2021 Excellence in Graduate Education Faculty Recognition Award from the Syracuse University Graduate School.

Publications & Presentations

Graduate Research Affiliate Claire Pendergrast

Claire B. Pendergrast and Nicole A. Errett published a paper titled,  Public Health Requirements and Authorities in State Statutory Disaster Recovery Law: A Cross-Sectional Legal Assessment in the Journal of Health Security.

Andrew London, Scott Landes, and Janet Wilmoth published new research on veteran mortality disadvantage.

Kevin Heffernan and colleagues published a paper titled, Cardiorespiratory Fitness, Inflammation, and the Incident Risk of Pneumonia, in the Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention.

Janet Wilmoth and Andrew London coedited the book, “Life-Course Implications of U.S. Public Policies” (Routledge, 2021). Jennifer Karas Montez, Colleen M. Heflin, and Madonna Harrington Meyer contributed chapters.

Amy Ellen Schwartz and colleagues authored a paper, Global COVID-19 Student Survey: First wave results, in Issue 79 of Covid Economics: Vetted and Real-Time Papers.

Madonna Harrington Meyer will be keynote speaker for a virtual conference, Dynamics of Accumulated Inequalities for Seniors in Employment (DAISIE) on May 25-26, at Karlstad University, Sweden. The title of her talk is “Grandparenting Children with Disabilities: Impact on Work and Retirement.”

Additionally, Harrington Meyer will give a joint talk at the DAISIE conference titled “Financial Impacts of Caring for Grandchildren with Disabilities.”

Research Profile of the Month

Colleen Heflin Portrait

Colleen Heflin testified before the U.S. Congress House Committee on Rules on March 27 on the issue of food insecurity among military and veteran families. The session: “Ending Hunger in America: Examining Hunger among Veteran and Military Families” was held to inform policymakers about the epidemic of food insecurity among veteran and military families.

Summary: By early April 2020, food insecurity rose to 21.9% among U.S. households – the highest rate ever recorded. Before COVID-19, about 1 in 7 military families experienced food insecurity. Data collected since COVID-19 hit the U.S. in early-2020 suggest that between 1 in 5 and 1 in 3 military families have experienced food insecurity in the last year. Food insecurity risk is also high among veterans, particularly disabled veterans. Food insecurity among soldiers is associated with lower likelihood of re-enlisting. Eligibility standards prevent many military families from accessing SNAP benefits.Several policy revisions are needed, including a change to SNAP eligibility guidelines for veterans and provision of transitional SNAP benefits to those leaving the military. Read Heflin’s research brief to learn more.