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project report, reports, nmsjei

Reports | Results

We work with our community, state, and national partners to work in environmental, food security, indigenous issues, and social justice inequalities. Below you can find detailed reports of NMSJEI projects in progress of completed:


President Nez continues push for the reauthorization and expansion of the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act

McKinley Community Collaborative for Health Equity (MCHE)

McKinley Community Collaborative for Health Equity (MCHE) partnered with Somos Gallup and Somos Un Pueblo Unidos to conduct a health impact assessment on wage theft and build the capacity of low wage workers in McKinley County. Wage theft impacts families when workers are not paid overtime, misclassified, not paid the minimum wage, or not paid. Often, low wage workers may encounter wage theft, yet do not report the situation. We conducted a health impact assessment to protect and expand protections of low wage workers. This also provided an opportunity to bring communities together across cultural differences in order to build the power of the people.

Click Image on the right to read the full 64 page report!

wage theft report, wage, theft, justice

McKinley Uranium and Health Outcomes

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez, First Lady Phefelia Nez, and Navajo Nation Washington Office officials met with members of Congress last week, to reaffirm their support for the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act Amendments of 2021, which would extend the Act until 2040, expand downwinder eligibility based on geographic residency and expand the range of years that can be used for calculating exposure for certain individuals working in uranium mines, mills, or transporting uranium ore. 

The Radiation Exposure Compensation Act was first enacted in 1990, then amended in 2000, and is set to expire in July of this year. The most recent bill was introduced in the U.S. House and Senate on Sept. 22, 2021. President Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer continue to work with the Navajo Uranium Radiation Victims Committee and members of the Navajo Nation Council to advocate for the reauthorization.“With the current Act set to expire three months from now, we need bipartisan support for the law’s extension and for the reauthorization and expansion of RECA through 2040. The meetings we had with members of both political parties last week are critical to garnering the support that is needed to push this bill through the House and Senate. We appreciate members of both parties for sitting down and listening to our concerns, many of which reflect the reports and testimony of our Navajo people. This is a united effort on behalf of former uranium miners and their families, to secure just compensation and benefits for the health issues and detrimental impacts of uranium mining conducted by the federal government. The RECA Amendments of 2021 presents an opportunity for this Congress to be a part of something historic for the Navajo people, the Navajo Uranium Radiation Victims Committee, and other impacted groups,” said President Nez. 

In March of last year, President Nez provided testimony before the U.S. Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, in support of Navajo people who continue to experience long-term health impacts due to radioactive contamination and exposure from abandoned uranium mines. He also met with members of the Navajo Uranium Radiation Victims Committee in October to gain more input and to hear directly from former uranium miners and their families.

Among numerous congressional members, President Nez met with U.S. Sen. Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.), Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Congresswoman Yvette Herrell (R-N.M.), Congressman John Curtis (R-UT), and Congresswoman Melanie Stansbury (D-N.M.).

In addition to the reauthorization, the Navajo Nation strongly urges Congress to go further to include all downwinders, to expand eligibility for coverage under the program to include additional categories of uranium workers and types of cancers and other radiation-related illnesses, and to increase the compensation cap to a minimum of $200,000 per individual regardless of worker classification or category of disease.

“We are committed to the former uranium miners and their families to do everything we can to get the RECA Amendments passed by July. There is support among many members of Congress, but we have a few issues to work through to get where we want to be. We will continue to work together with all parties to get this across the finish line,” said Vice President Lizer.

McKinley Community Collaborative for Health Equity (NMHEP)

In July 1979 at the United Nuclear Corporations’ uranium processing mill in Northwest New Mexico, a dam broke releasing more than 1,100 tons of uranium mining wastes-tailings along with 100 million gallons of radioactive water into the Pipeline Arroyo and went downstream along the Rio Puerco. The “Church Rock Tailings Spill” is the second largest accident in the United States that released radioactive materials. We are conducting a Health Impact Assessment (HIA) to analyze how uranium mining in McKinley County affected the physical, emotional, economic and spiritual health of communities. Our HIA will look at the following health determinants: Environmental exposures/contamination; Displacement and relocation; Cultural relevance of the land to holistic health; and Community Efficacy.


New Mexico Health Equity Partnership Evaluation

March 1, 2022 – February 29, 2021

Evaluation Background

Evaluation Goal: Between March 1, 2020 – February 29, 2021, the New Mexico Health Equity Partnership (HEP) team and place-based coordinators conducted an evaluation of our proposed efforts for the past year. During 2019, we collectively developed an evaluation plan and our respective logic models (goals, objectives, inputs, activities, measures, outputs, outcomes, etc.), with support from the REAL evaluation team. These documents were reviewed and approved by Meriah Heredia-Griego and Alvin Warren. HEP’s evaluation goal is to conduct an outcome and process evaluation to determine:

  • If the work is contributing to the short, medium and long-term outcomes focused on: relationship building, leadership development, policies impacted/systems changed, and health outcomes to improve family and child well-being? We also ask, what unintended outcomes (positive and negative) were produced? For purposes of this evaluation report, we speak to the progress towards the expected results identified by Alvin Warren (former program officer) as requested in WKKF’s new reporting format. More detailed outcomes are highlighted in the narrative report.

  • We seek to answer process questions to guide our practice on what we are proud of, what we are learning, what the challenges and opportunities are, what the unique benefits are of being part of the partnership, and what are the secret ingredients to our success?

  • As part of this, we consider: How is the work being implemented in a transformative way that is culturally appropriate for specific communities? How satisfied are participants with workshops?

The overall purpose of the evaluation is to intentionally guide, inform, and protect our work. We want to view the whole picture and take a breath to understand where we are at, identify barriers, engage in ongoing learning, be clear on what we have achieved, and inform next steps. Being able to clearly communicate a narrative based on credible evidence will allow us to build momentum and attract stakeholders, including funders to the work. Our learnings will enable us to create more time and spaciousness to intentionally move forward with our efforts rather than repeating mistakes.

Purpose: The New Mexico Health Equity Partnership (HEP) strengthens the capacity of communities to shift power relations and advocate for policy and system changes to create healthy and just communities.

Shared Valued: HEP believes every New Mexican should have the opportunity to lead a healthy life, live in neighborhoods where children and families thrive, and have a say in decisions that impact their communities and their lives.

Vision: Every New Mexican can succeed and live a healthy life that includes quality housing, education, nutrition, safety, transportation, cultural and language access, etc. The community is fully engaged in ensuring good living conditions and has a say in policy decisions that impact their day-to-day lives.

New Mexico Health Equity Partnership at the Santa Fe Community Foundation

A Summary of Progress and Accomplishments: March 1, 2020 – February 29, 2021

Summary: The New Mexico Health Equity Partnership (HEP), an initiative at the Santa Fe Community Foundation (SFCF), strengthens the capacity of communities to shift power relations and advocate for policy and systems changes to create healthy and just communities. HEP believes every New Mexican should have the opportunity to lead a healthy life, live in neighborhoods where children and families thrive, and have a say in the decisions that impact their lives. HEP efforts are statewide, with focused place-based efforts in Bernalillo, Doña Ana, McKinley, and San Juan counties. HEP invests in Black, Indigenous, and people of color community-based leadership that holds the capacity and knowledge to change systems so New Mexicans can live a healthy life. Between March 1, 2020 – February 29, 2021, HEP consisted of two staff, eight steering committee members, seven HIA technical assistance providers, four core partners and a strong network of community-based organizations learning from one another and serving as a galvanizing force to offer creative solutions. HEP 1) trains groups to strengthen their skills in community-driven research using tools such as, Health Impact Assessment (HIA) to educate decision makers on issues that impact health; 2) Convenes partners to foster relationships, leverage resources, share tools and best practices, and imagine possibilities for healthy and just neighborhoods; and 3) Provides resources to three-placed based teams to support their organizational and advocacy capacity to advance health equity. HEP members have their own networks, strengthening the collective power of HEP as a network of networks.

In this report within the framework of HEP’s goals, we highlight the HEP networks’ 1) accomplishments, challenges, lessons; and applications of learnings; 2) funding sources; and 3) expected results and changes.

The report speaks to HEP’s goals, objectives, and outcomes outlined in the logic model approved by WKKF in 2019. We also speak to the expected results identified by Alvin Warren as requested in the new reporting format. These are highlighted in grey throughout the report and compiled in a table in section 3.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation Grant

New Mexico Health Equity Partnership
Grant Year-End Reporting Form

Evaluation logic model outputs and outcomes designed by MCHE (please fill in the blank). If you will no longer be completing an activity connected to one of the outputs or outcomes or weren’t able to because of COVID-19, please note this. We realize that work looked very different this past year due to the pandemic.

COVID-19 response: Please share key outputs and outcomes-based what you have identified for your mutual aid work (# of packages of food distributed, culturally appropriate types of foods delivered, key partners involved etc.).

March 28, McKinley CHE and McKinley Health Alliance organized a conference call with 20 participants who were interested in creating a mutual aid to assess interest. We asked Indigenous Lifeways, Inc., to serve as the fiscal agent and did agree. Five organizations united and began distribution in April 2020. Please visit for more information;

  • Over 4,000 volunteer hours

  • 7,595 Navajo, Zuni, and mixed-status families fed throughout McKinley County.

  • Procurement of food and quickly established a supply chain early stages of the pandemic.

  • Provided educational materials on local 2020 Census, Voting efforts, and housing rights.

  • Masks and supplies donations throughout the country.

  • Featured in USA Today, MS Magazine, Gallup Independent, and Navajo Times.

  • $ 403,767.86 raised for food, gas, and recovery effort through grants, solidarity donations, and PayPal

  • 8,000 First Aid Kits

  • 3,000 Gatorade

  • $25,000 for 4 homes without clean water systems from Dig Deep see

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