A survey of policies and local ordinances supporting physical activity in Hawaii counties

Katie M. Heinrich, Courtney B. Johnson, Yuka Jokura, Blythe Nett, Jay E. Maddock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background Features of the built environment that influence physical activity behavior characterize Active Community Environments. Context Whether Active Community Environments policies exist in the state of Hawaii's four counties is unknown. The purpose of this study was to provide a baseline assessment of these policies in Hawaii. Methods A survey assessing policies in six domains (i.e., sidewalks, bike lanes, greenways, recreational facilities, commercial buildings, and shared-use paths) was completed by employees of Hawaii planning departments. Consequences Honolulu County had the most policies (n = 13), followed by Maui County (n = 6), Kauai County (n = 2), and Hawaii County (n = 1). Written policies were most prevalent in Honolulu County (n = 15), followed by Kauai County (n = 14), Hawaii County, (n = 4), and Maui County (n = 3). Sidewalk policies were reported for Honolulu County, Maui County (no written policies were found for Maui County), and Kauai County. Bike lane and greenway policies were found for Honolulu County (reported and written) and Kauai County (written). Recreation facility and pedestrian shared-use path policies existed for all counties, although only Honolulu and Kauai counties had written policies for commercial buildings (Maui County reported having policies). Few policies directly addressed physical activity promotion. Interpretation The most populous county, Honolulu, had the most policies in place, although discrepancies existed between reported and written policies. This baseline measure of physical activity-related policies will help focus efforts of county coalitions to increase opportunities for physical activity. Additional policies should be tracked with population behavior surveillance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPreventing Chronic Disease
Volume5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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