Artist Mary Lou Correia graciously donates 30% of painting sales to our work if you mention Parents for a Safer Environment. www.mlcorreia.com
Our History in a Flash
Parents for a Safer Environment, PASE, was formed by Susan JunFish in 2002 after witnessing children being exposed to serious environmental health hazards in local preschools in Moraga, Lafayette and Orinda, CA. A steering committee of local volunteers, aided by an Advisory Board of Bay Area health and technical experts, work to conduct research, outreach/education to the community and decision makers as well as advocate for policy change to prevent environmental toxic exposures and viable solutions. Our geographical area of impact is primarily Contra Costa County, with central county having highest priority currently from Steering Committee consensus. As our capacity increases, we wish to take on more projects that would include east and west county communities.
In the past thirteen years, due to the research, education/outreach and advocacy efforts of PASE:
- Contra Costa County has reduced pesticide usage by an average of 64%, and implemented an Integrative Pest Management Policy (IPM). We continually monitor to ensure that the bar is raised in order protect public health and the environment.
- Town of Moraga decreased pesticide usage by 95%, and adopted one of the most protective written policies in California that is actually implemented.
- The Moraga School District eliminated the use of all pesticides and adopted the most protective written policies in California. In addition, they replaced toxic cleaning products with safer, effective, and cheaper alternatives and also adopted the beginning of a nutrition policy.
- Contra Costa County Mosquito and Vector Control District implemented a goal of eliminating spraying for flying adult mosquitoes and initiated placing map locations of future spraying to give people a chance to avoid direct exposure.
- The State of CA passed an improvement to the Healthy Schools Act in 2014 that require at minimum, a written least toxic pest program, or Integrated Pest Management, for all child care centers and K-12 schools; reporting of pesticides by applicators, and minimal training of least toxic pest control methods by applicators at schools, and a Program requirement at each school. This goes into effect July 1, 2016.
- City of Walnut Creek ceased all 2,4-D usage as of December, 2015 after we presented at the City Council meeting. The City also agreed to post signage prior to any application. However, community members are sending PASE photos showing inconsistency in posting and rodenticide usage without posting. We are planning phase III that will require Walnut Creek residents' involvement.
- East Bay Regional Parks District agreed to phase out Oryzalin, the Prop 65 known human carcinogen and active ingredient in the product, Surflan, that was applied in many parks to control weeds under picnic benches, base of drinking fountains and trees. The District also began piloting trapping and CO2 asphyxiation since our last presentation to staff with our recommendations in April, 2016. We are in phase II of communicating, negotiating, and meeting with staff and decision makers.
- Acalanes Union High School District (campuses in 4 cities) - The District ceasing the use of all pesticides except for Roundup in 2006 after we shared our pesticide usage analysis. The worst pesticide eliminated was the CA restricted pesticide product, Sevin, used around the Soda Aquatic Center community pool for ant control, an overkill. Now the District is using self containerized bait stations that we introduced and says they work great and saves them money. Sevin contained the the chemical, Carbaryl, that is illegal to use at schools, and a Prop 65 known human carcinogen and known male reproductive toxin, a central nervous system toxin (inhibits acetylcholineesterase, a enzyme that controls neurotransmission) and hormone disruptor. Due to the location of the product, around the base of the building where children sat in bared skin in swim suits eating lunch, resting, etc. it is highly likely that many high school students and community children using the pool were exposed since there were no restrictions for re-entry. The half life of Carbaryl is about a week. We are in phase IV with the AUHSD, negotiating an improved written IPM Policy with a clearer guideline for staff that shows Approved, Limited, and Restricted pesticide toxicity categories to decrease chances of unnecessary and highly risky incidents re-occurring.
- Thousands of individuals, as well as public agencies including local school districts and cities/towns have received training and information from numerous workshops, conferences, and resources we have provided since 2003.