Jan 9, 2009

School Children exposed to Pesticides?

A new report released by an environmental organization based in Eugene, Oregon called the Oregon Toxics Alliance reveals that children may unknowingly be exposed to toxics such as pesticides, herbicides, and insecticides. So the question is raised, are YOUR children safe from pesticides at schools?

The report indicates that children exposed to pesticides may show acute symptoms that may mimic other well known ailments such as headache, sore throat, and flu. The data from the report was pulled from three state agencies in the state of Oregon including the Dept. of Agriculture, the Dept. of Human and Health Services, and the Dept. of Forestry. It also cited 56 cases of suggested pesticide exposure at schools, bus stops, and child care facilities. The problem could be much worse than what is reported, and that worries Lisa Arkin, executive director for Oregon Toxics Alliance.

According to the Associated Press, this is not a new issue. Severe cases of pesticide exposure at schools have been reported in California and have even been attributed to death.

The Oregon Toxics Alliance is calling for better protection for children at schools through the implementation of Integrated Pest Management or IPM. IPM is a method for using less pesticides in favor of alternatives as well as best practices to protect people and the environment.