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Insight and opinion from Coming Clean and our partners.
January 28, 2022
We grew up in or near predominantly Black communities surrounded by heavy industry. As children in Louisville, Kentucky, and Claymont, Delaware, we knew something was amiss when so many friends and family members developed dense coughs, asthma, cancer, and other diseases. What we didn’t know at the time is that we were among many low-income communities of color across the country suffering from toxic chemical exposure. For decades our constituents have lived under the constant threat of explosions or toxic releases in our neighborhoods, never knowing what or when the next disaster will be. Parents must weigh the benefits of allowing their children to go outdoors with the risks of being exposed to harsh chemicals. We recently saw air pollution in our communities lead to disproportionate rates of severe illness and death during this pandemic, a trend that has been observed across the country. Read More
January 18, 2022
Have you ever watched somebody shake a can of soda, and then get ready to crack open the top? You know it’s going to explode, but you don’t know when, or how bad it will be. That’s what it’s like living near a chemical plant. Except the consequences can be deadly. As a lifelong resident of Kanawha County, West Virginia — an area that has been home to dozens of industrial facilities making everything from pesticides to plastics — I know this uncertain feeling all too well. For the past several decades, I’ve listened to emergency sirens go off in my community, indicating that we need to shelter in place, while virtually no information is shared about what happened or how dangerous it might be. The Environmental Protection Agency can help protect millions of people who live near industrial facilities — but only if it works now to strengthen an important federal chemical policy. Read More
January 12, 2022
The Environmental Justice Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform (EJHA) and Coming Clean are deeply grateful to Dr. Cecilia Martinez for her service as Senior Director of Environmental Justice to the Council for Environmental Quality (CEQ). Dr. Martinez's profound commitment to the many legacy communities living on the fencelines of environmental injustices is undeniable. As the Biden Administration moves forward, it remains essential to deliver on the promises made to these communities and make certain that no community is left behind. Read More
December 20, 2021
Dr. Sass’ educational and professional background make her exceptionally well qualified to serve as a board member on the CSB, which is charged with investigating chemical disasters and making recommendations to industry and government on best ways to prevent future incidents. Read More
December 3, 2021
On this 37th anniversary of the world’s worst industrial disaster, we, the undersigned individuals and organizations from across the United States, express our solidarity with the people of Bhopal who, in 1984, were exposed when 27 tons of the highly toxic pesticide intermediary chemical, methyl isocyanate (MIC), leaked due to a preventable incident at the Union Carbide pesticide plant. We stand united to end the harm from toxic chemicals throughout their lifecycle, from feedstock extraction to disposal and persistent contamination in humans and the environment. Read More
November 3, 2021
The Board of Directors of Coming Clean is proud to announce the election of Dr. Marva E. King as the new Chair of the Board and the election of Yudith Azareth Nieto, as the new Vice Chair of the Board. Join us in welcoming them to their new roles!
[Letter from Ken Geiser, Board of Directors, outgoing Chair]. Read More
July 26, 2021
In the next few weeks, congressional leaders have a critical opportunity to join forces with President Joe Biden to turn the tide against climate change, economic inequality, and environmental injustice.
[Op-Ed in The Hill by John Podesta, Center for American Progress and Michele Roberts, Environmental Justice Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform.] Read More
June 5, 2021
"The fight for a livable planet and the fight for social justice are one and the same. The struggle for a stable climate, for clean air and water must begin in places like South Valley that have long paid the price for others’ wealth and comfort. And its success depends on building the power and prosperity of people in marginalized communities — so that no one’s home is a dumping ground."
- Richard Moore (co-coordinator of the Environmental Justice Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform, co-coordinator of Los Jardines Institute (The Gardens Institute) in Albuquerque, N.M., and co-chair of the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council) Read More
April 5, 2021
In the latest Retailer Report Card on chemical management policies, Dollar Tree and Dollar General improved their grades, but 99 Cents Only Stores once again received an F. If discount retailers care at all about the health and well-being of the communities they operate in, or the environmental racism that they are perpetuating, they should reallocate resources and start cleaning up their supply chains immediately. Read More
November 30, 2020
The darkest days of the pandemic are still ahead of us, as we head into the winter with a surge of cases and without a national strategy to address Covid-19. It will be especially grim for essential food workers like farmworkers and meat packers who still lack basic protections in the workplace. They will likely experience hundreds more needless deaths. The impact of Covid-19 on these workers could also shock the food system, with potential disruption greater than what we saw in the spring. Read More
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