For thirty years, the Company for Poisonous Substances and Illness Registry (ATSDR) has traveled to communities all through the nation to conduct investigations at hazardous waste websites to maintain communities secure from dangerous environmental exposures and associated ailments. We’ve discovered that in most states, licensing necessities for early care and training (ECE) amenities, akin to nurseries, faculties, and daycare facilities, don’t contemplate environmental exposures.
To deal with this subject, ATSDR’s Division of Group Well being Investigations (DCHI) launched the Select Protected Locations for Early Care and Schooling (CSPECE) steering guide and web site with instruments and sources for public well being professionals to develop packages that shield the well being of youngsters the place they be taught and play. Selecting secure locations for ECE amenities reduces youngsters’s danger of being uncovered to harmful chemical compounds whereas within the amenities. “We wish professionals in public well being, group planning, licensing, zoning, environmental safety, early care and training, and different fields to make sure the security of ECE areas inside their communities and are dedicated to offering them assist in doing so,” mentioned Ileana Arias, PhD, director of ATSDR’s Division of Group Well being Investigations.
The secure siting of ECE amenities features a assessment of former makes use of of a web site that could have left dangerous substances on the property (each constructing and land), migration of dangerous substances onto the location from close by properties or actions, naturally occurring dangerous substances on web site, and entry to secure consuming water.
ATSDR offers technical assist and steering by way of its APPLETREE Program, brief for ATSDR’s Partnership to Promote Native Efforts to Cut back Environmental Publicity. This cooperative settlement funds 25 state well being departments to enhance their capability to maintain communities secure from dangerous exposures and associated ailments and to assist them begin their very own Select Protected Locations (CSP) packages. Over the following three years, state well being departments will work to obtain CSP program targets that embody the next:
- defining how areas for ECE packages are chosen,
- creating strategies to assist guarantee ECE packages are positioned on secure websites, and
- implementing a pilot Select Protected Locations program.
Some APPLETREE states have already got a CSP program. ATSDR is supporting them with sources to develop their packages, share greatest practices with different states, and develop methods to consider their success.
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