For Immediate Release: December 1, 2017
Contact: Nancy Meza, 773.557.3561, firstname.lastname@example.org Lilian Molina, 773.600.4728, email@example.com
LITTLE VILLAGE, CHICAGO, IL – Mayor Rahm Emanuel along with various municipal leaders from across the Country, Canada and Mexico are gathering to articulate commitments to the Paris Agreement. Although this is a great step in the right direction, environmental justice communities suffer first hand the consequences of climate change therefore should have a say in the direct demands and actions needed to make our communities healthy and safe. The Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO) along with community members and allies such as Moms Clean Air Force, Blacks in Green, Southeast Side Coalition to Ban Petcoke and others, will come together to give testimony on the hardships and health harms that have affected our communities due to the industrial legacy in our backyards. We hope to shine light and bring policies and regulation that are inclusive of environment and health to our industrial corridors which currently do not protect us.
The exclusion of regulations in favor of health and environment in our industrial corridors gives it leeway to house two local elementary schools, Zapata and Finkl academy, and a local high school, The Little Village Lawndale High School. This poses numerous health risks due to the congestive diesel truck traffic that happens during surrounding facility operation hours. Most ,if not all, facilities contract trucks that operate on a diesel engine, this type of engine emits PM 2.5 which are microscopic particles that can cause respiratory health problems in children, adults and elders.
On Friday December 1, 2017 in front of Zapata elementary school we will be pushing our demands for Air filtration systems specialized to filter PM 2.5 in schools that are in close proximity of industry, we will demand fence line air monitoring from industrial facilities with community access to data and last but not least demanding a commitment from industrial facilities in our community to retrofit their trucks to renewable electric energy in the near future.