Emerging musicians using voices to eliminate disparities in health

Songwriters Michael and Tanya Trotter – also known as The War and Treaty – are raising awareness about health disparities within disadvantaged communities

August 17, 2018 Categories: Program News

DALLAS, Aug. 17, 2018 — The rising musical duo The War and Treaty is making their voice heard in an important way: Today, Michael and Tanya Trotter announced they’re joining the nationwide EmPOWERED to ServeTM movement to help eliminate disparities in health.

As EmPOWERED to Serve ambassadors, the Trotters are joining multicultural volunteers across the country who are passionate about driving change in their communities to close gaps in health equity through advocacy, education and social change. All their work is inspired by the American Heart Association — the world’s leading voluntary health organization dedicated to building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

“Michael and Tanya are passionate ambassador volunteers who know just how important these types of environmental factors are when addressing health equity,” said American Heart Association CEO, Nancy Brown. “These efforts are critical to help people facing health disparities associated with insufficient education, inadequate housing, exposure to violence and limited opportunities to earn a livable wage.”

For Michael Trotter, these factors are personal, particularly housing.

He has faced housing insecurity first-hand throughout his life, most recently when he was homeless after he returned from serving with the Army in Iraq. “You can’t imagine the despair I had going from a respected soldier serving my country, to living on the streets of the very nation I was protecting,” he said. “Managing my diabetes and eating a healthy diet weren’t exactly on my radar during those times.”

Serious health problems are a major concern among the homeless. Conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and HIV/AIDS can be can be found at high rates among homeless people, according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness.

“Access to affordable housing, fair wages, strong school systems, safe streets and healthy foods are vital to help the millions burdened by social determinants of health,” Brown said.

The Trotters like to bring hope to people through their music and strive to do the same as EmPOWERED to Serve volunteers.

“The themes we sing and write about can be put to action as Michael and I serve in this important ambassador role and work to inspire mankind to help one another,” Tanya said.  

They are dedicating to helping people who are forced to make difficult choices every day:  between paying rent, buying healthy foods, getting medications or medical care.  However, as Michael’s case shows, improving just one of these factors provides the kind of stability that empowers people to work on their health.

The Trotters joined forces with the American Heart Association to debut the fourth installment of the EmPOWERED to Serve “Take Me Home” mini-documentaries at the 2018 Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival. Their latest album, Healing Tide, is available now.

For additional information about the American Heart Association and its EmPOWERED to Serve movement, and to become an ambassador, visit empoweredtoserve.org.

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About the American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke –  the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit heart.org or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

For Media Inquiries: 214-706-1173

Mara Silverio: 214-706-1508; Mara.silverio@heart.org

For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721)

heart.org