Live Well Allegheny Welcomes Four Municipalities, Phipps Conservatory

April 11, 2017

PITTSBURGH – The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) today announced that the Borough of Bellevue, Borough of Sharpsburg, Borough of East McKeesport, and the City of Duquesne were designated as Live Well Allegheny Communities and Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is the newest Live Well Allegheny Workplace.

“I’m thrilled to see the Live Well Allegheny program continue to grow and expand,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “With today’s announcement, we now have 41 municipalities, 10 school districts, 35 restaurants – some having multiple locations, and 10 workplaces all committed to working together to improve the health and wellness of county residents. What’s even more excited is that we have room to welcome even more and encourage residents to learn more about the initiative.”

The Borough of Bellevue committed to action steps intended to improve the health of residents including promotion of wellness campaign events to employees and residents, developing indoor and outdoor wellness trails that are accessible to residents of all abilities and to offer incentives for employees who walk or bike to work. In addition, Bellevue will promote healthier options in vending machines with nutrient content listed and promote smoke-free building and perimeters.

“It is so exciting to see more and more communities and workplaces join our Live Well Allegheny effort,” said Dr. Karen Hacker, Director of the Allegheny County Health Department. “We are committed to engaging all 130 municipalities in this effort and we are well on our way. With this announcement, we have 41 Live Well Allegheny Communities. These efforts to surround citizens with healthy options can make a big difference in the health of our County.”

The Borough of Sharpsburg committed to several action steps in order to become designated as a Live Well Allegheny Community. The municipality will promote participation of employees and residents in wellness campaign events and activities. Sharpsburg is committed to multi-modal transportation for residents by providing facilities or adopting policies that encourage walking and bicycling. In addition, the community will disseminate health information about physical activity, nutrition, and smoking cessation using websites and social media and support local farmers’ markets and smoke-free spaces.

The Borough of East McKeesport has been designated as a Live Well Allegheny Community for committing to the health of residents. The community will utilize social media tools as a way of communicating health messages and promote participation in wellness events. East McKeesport intends in developing walking maps as well as indoor and outdoor wellness trails, which are accessible to residents of all abilities. The borough will provide employees incentives to walk or bike to work as a way to promote multimodal transportation and also host an OpenStreets event on June 3rd, 11am-2pm. The community will support farmers’ markets and work with vending machine companies to add healthy food options. Smoke-free environments are a priority for the borough as well.

The City of Duquesne joins the Live Well Allegheny campaign by committing to partner with the Steel Valley Trail Council to promote the use of the trail by city residents as well as apply for funding to improve pedestrian and bicyclist access to the trail system. Duquesne will also promote and support farmers’ markets by partnering with the Pittsburgh Community Food Bank and promote smoke-free buildings, playgrounds and perimeters.

The newest Live Well Allegheny Workplace, Phipps Conservatory & Botanical Gardens (Pittsburgh, PA) has already implemented many of the goals of the campaign as part of a workplace wellness program that started in 2013. Its mission is to provide opportunities for employees to engage in physical activity, attend educational classes on health and wellness and to access information on health and wellness during the work day. As part of its commitment, Phipps will expand their employee wellness program including the addition of on-site yoga and employee fitness center, expand programs which work within local communities such as Homegrown and Let’s Move Pittsburgh, Map a safe walking route starting and ending from the workplace or in vicinity and set up a walking group mid-day.

Participants in the Live Well Allegheny campaign work with Health Department’s staff. While monetary resources are not part of the initiative, participating workplaces can receive materials, information and collateral items to promote the campaign and their individual efforts to live well.

Live Well Allegheny was launched in January 2014 by County Executive Fitzgerald as a comprehensive, innovative strategy on wellness that embraces a broad concept of living well to include physical health, mental wellness, personal and community safety, prevention and preparedness, and much more. The effort is being led by the Board of Health and Health Department Director Dr. Karen Hacker.

About ACHD

Created in 1957, the Allegheny County Health Department is charged with protecting the environmental and public health of 1.2 million County residents through Pennsylvania Act 315 , the Local Health Administration Law.