About Children's EPA‎ > ‎Blog‎ > ‎

Manhattan Children Still Battle 9/11-Related Illnesses, still no protection

posted Sep 11, 2011, 5:29 PM by Nancy Swan   [ updated Sep 29, 2011, 11:35 PM ]

Atlantic Monthly " In Manhattan, Children Still Battle 9/11-Related Illnesses

Sep 11 2011, 7:14 AM ET

The day the Twin Towers crumbled, more than 25,000 kids inhaled toxic substances. Ten years later, many of them are suffering from health problems that still haven't gone away.

Besides the tragic effect of 9/11 on the health of children, this study also show why children should not be encouraged nor allowed to work/help/volunteer in disaster areas.  Hurricane Katrina and the BP Oil Spill left injured children in its wake. Many of those were teenagers who were encouraged by youth and religious organizations to volunteer without giving them, nor parents, warning of dangers of toxins in the area.  

The US government has failed to provide safety standards and separate regulations regarding exposure to potentially dangerous or hazardous chemicals.   What is considered "safe" by government agencies is based upon a healthy grown male worker, and does not apply to non contracted workers.  What is safe for a grown man can kill an infant.  

President Obama let his own children play in contaminated Gulf of Mexico water and declared the beaches of the Gulf of Mexico "clean" and "safe,"  then encouraged "families," to visit and play in the sand and in the water.   Hours later, the beaches were once again littered with tar balls from the BP Oil Spill.  National media showed children playing alongside BP workers cleaning the beach.  Was our federal leader right to encourage families with children to play on beaches and in the water?  No.  The President had no data to support safety for children. Yet, the President's own EPA declared that children are more vulnerable to toxins than adults.

A few days ago, President Obama promised In his speech to advocate the passage of the American Jobs Act, that if passed, American jobs would increase, that infrastructure, including school buildings and facilities would be improved, and that worker safety would not be compromised.

Just worker safety?  What about the safety of children during the proposed renovation and construction on school sites?  What about the safety of bystanders, educators, children in playgrounds and yards, near renovation or the safety of child occupants in nearby buildings?

I was seriously and permanently injured in 1985 by highly toxic chemicals while teaching school in Mississippi, just seven blocks from the Gulf of Mexico.  Two dozen children were also injured.  For more information visit www.toxicjustice.com

Thirty years has passed without any reform to protect schoolchildren from injury from poor environmental conditions and hazardous chemicals.  No agency regulates, or records school injuries, nor is any agency assigned oversight over the safety of our school-children's health.
To learn more, visit www.childrensepa.org