Thought this might interest some of you.
------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
Date: Wed, 27 May 1998 08:07:04 -0700
From: "Richard Schneider (Mister 3D)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: First lady tells S.F. of pesticide harm
First lady tells S.F. of pesticide harm
By Julian Guthrie
OF THE EXAMINER STAFF
Wednesday, May 27, 1997
Backs Boxer's bill for ban near schools
Saying children "roll around on the ground, eat
more dirt, run harder and gulp more air and water
than most adults," first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton
offered her support of a bill to ban pesticides in
Clinton, speaking to students, parents and faculty at
Sherman Elementary in The City Tuesday, said
Sen. Barbara Boxer's bill would force the rest of
the nation to follow San Francisco's lead in taking a
"hard stance against pesticides."
In February, San Francisco Unified adopted one of
the country's most stringent policies to reduce the
use of pesticides and herbicides deemed as known
or probable carcinogens.
Boxer's bill, called the Children's Environmental
Protection Act, would require the Environmental
Protection Agency to set health and safety
standards at levels that protect children. Currently,
allowable carcinogen levels are set for a
The bill -- supported by San Francisco schools
chief Bill Rojas -- also would require the EPA to
research and identify the hazardous substances
most commonly used in schools, create a
"safer-for-children" list of products, and notify
families when toxins are to be used in or near
"What's good for a 25-pound child and what's
good for a 155-pound adult is very different,"
Clinton said. "Last week, I visited Children's
Hospital in Washington. Of 48,000 admissions to
emergency rooms, 16,000 were for asthma. The
increase in childhood asthma is linked to
When Clinton asked who in the audience had
experienced asthma firsthand or through a friend,
more than half raised their hands. "Asthma is an
indicator disease. It's going up dramatically," she
Bertram Lubin, a pediatrician and director of
medical research at Children's Hospital in Oakland
who was asked to speak at the event, said the rate
of asthma has increased 16 percent between 1980
"Genetic factors contribute, as do environmental
toxins," Lubin said. "Many people have disregarded
the connections between the environment and
disease. That's ridiculous. We just haven't had the
appropriate tools to evaluate these associations.
"There's no question the environment can harm kids
-- through their skin, diet and the air they breathe,"
Lubin added. "We need new safety standards that
are relevant to children."
Boxer introduced the bill, now in the Environment
and Public Works Committee, after meeting
parents whose 5-year-old child had died of a
nongenetic form of cancer.
The parents, Nancy and James Chudas of Los
Angeles, who have since started a foundation to
examine the impact of the environment on children's
health, said they believe environmental toxins
caused their daughter's cancer.
Boxer's sweeping bill, introduced last year, faces an
"This bill calls for the right things for the right
reasons, but there will still be arguments over how
Sen. Boxer proposes to protect children," said Joy
Carlson, executive director of the Children's
Environmental Health Network, a national
organization based in Emeryville.
"This bill helps to inform adults that their children,
grandchildren, nieces and nephews are not
protected in the same way they're protected,"
To Sherman fifth-grader Kirsten Glover, "pollution
and all that stuff" is a "deep issue."
"I don't like people who throw garbage into the
ocean," Kirsten said. "And, people spray
dangerous stuff on food and plants."
Classmate Erica Chang said her grandmother buys
only organic fruit and vegetables.
"She says she doesn't want chemicals to come into
my body," Erica said. "Sometimes I worry because
you never know what's in your food."
Fifth-grader Dani Rose said getting to see the first
lady was better than recess.
"You can tell she really cares about kids," Dani
said. "She made it interesting so we wouldn't be
bored or fall asleep. She got right to the point."
Clinton had a busy day, with more than
awareness-raising on her mind. She did not one --
but two -- events for Boxer, who is up for
reelection in November. The first, a luncheon at the
Fairmont Hotel in The City, was attended by about
600 people. The second was a reception in Santa
Monica. More than $500,000 was raised for
Michele Gale-Sinex, communications manager
Center for Integrated Ag Systems
UW-Madison College of Ag and Life Sciences
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