WASHINGTON — To commemorate the twenty fifth Anniversary of the landmark Govt Order Safety of Kids from Environmental Well being Dangers and Security Dangers signed in 1997, in the present day the U.S. Environmental Safety Company (EPA) introduced the award of the primary 4 cooperative agreements beneath the Kids’s Wholesome Studying Environments in Low-Revenue and/or Minority Communities competitors. This $2 million grant program competitors was funded by the American Rescue Plan (ARP) to help kids’s environmental well being by constructing capability via actions that establish and deal with disproportionate environmental or public well being harms and dangers in underserved communities.
“We all know kids are particularly weak to environmental well being dangers as they develop, and we additionally know not all kids face the identical dangers – black and Latino kids nonetheless have larger charges of bronchial asthma in comparison with white kids and have larger charges of lead publicity,” mentioned EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “It’s time to concentrate on addressing these disparities so that every one kids, irrespective of their race or earnings, have a secure, stage taking part in discipline.”
The 4 grantees who’ve been awarded $200,000 every are:
- Well being Sources in Motion whose venture, “Wholesome Environments Advance Studying (HEAL): Constructing Capability for Resilient Faculties in Massachusetts,” will construct data and capability to enhance environmental well being situations inside colleges throughout Massachusetts, optimizing outcomes associated to wholesome childhood improvement significantly for districts the place college students are most burdened by bronchial asthma and excessive warmth. HEAL will present coaching and technical help on insurance policies and practices to handle environmental bronchial asthma triggers, excessive warmth, and air flow to 5-7 college districts in low-income communities. HEAL can even leverage associate networks to disseminate sources to all MA public college districts and throughout New England.
- Girls for a Wholesome Atmosphere whose venture will full over 200 eco-healthy assessments and supply options and technical help to handle environmental dangers at childcare facilities in low-income and minority communities throughout Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Moreover, childcare middle workers throughout Philadelphia will take part in webinars targeted on related environmental well being matters. By means of this cooperative settlement, Girls for a Wholesome Atmosphere will kind a statewide partnership with childcare facilities to strategize bringing extra sources and mitigation methods to facilities throughout the commonwealth.
- The College of Texas Well being Science Middle at Houston whose venture will conduct “Outreach for Wholesome Studying Environments in West Texas.” By means of this venture, UTHealth will associate with the Southwest Middle for Pediatric Environmental Well being to construct capability for more healthy studying environments inside low-income colleges within the Paso del Norte Area. The principle targets are to offer culturally related data for college decision-makers to establish well being danger drivers, reveal greatest practices for sustaining an environmentally secure college, and share preparedness procedures in anticipation of an hostile occasion.
- The American Lung Affiliation’s “Breathe Properly Be taught Properly” venture will construct consciousness and capability for colleges in Tribal communities on the Fort Peck, Blackfeet, and Crow/Northern Cheyenne reservations in Montana to ascertain lung-friendly colleges (LFS) insurance policies and practices, thereby lowering kids’s publicity to environmental well being contaminants. These tribal communities are on the front-line of local weather change-related well being impacts and face disproportionate environmental well being hazards from intense wildfire smoke episodes. Bolstering the position of colleges to offer a clear air respite primarily based on their very own priorities will enhance the well being of everybody on the college. Most of the mitigation methods and trainings obtainable via the ALA present evidence-based and greatest apply efforts that additionally assist scale back COVID-19 transmission danger. Montana additionally has naturally excessive ranges of radon, prompting the necessity for schooling and consciousness on this EH hazard that may work to enhance public well being.
EPA is at the moment processing six extra cooperative agreements of $200,000 every from the competitors which is able to fulfill the target of funding one cooperative settlement per EPA area. EPA is happy to announce that the next recipients have been chosen to obtain funding to help kids’s environmental well being in studying environments. EPA anticipates it would award these organizations cooperative agreements of $200,000 every as soon as all authorized and administrative necessities are glad.
- Environmental Safety within the Caribbean (U.S. Virgin Islands)
- College of Mississippi Medical Middle (central Mississippi)
- Milwaukee Public Faculties (Milwaukee, Wisconsin)
- Wichita State College (Kansas)
- Northern Arizona College (Cocopah Tribe)
- Baby Care Conscious of America (Oregon)
This grant program is a part of EPA’s funding to handle environmental well being disparities head on; as well as, EPA additionally used ARP funding to help the Pediatric Environmental Well being Specialty Items throughout the nation, a community of well being care practitioners who deal with kids’s well being points that come up via environmental exposures. PEHSUs work to “deal with historic injustices and ongoing environmental racism and deal with the existential risk of local weather change.”
In 1997, EPA established the Workplace of Kids’s Well being Safety (OCHP). OCHP leads the Company’s work to make sure that all kids, particularly these in underserved communities, thrive by residing, studying, and taking part in free from environmental exposures like hazardous chemical compounds, indoor and outside air air pollution, and unsafe consuming water that contribute to dangerous well being results. Watch this video to be taught extra concerning the significance of youngsters’s environmental well being and EPA’s position in defending it.
Final October, EPA issued its first-ever revision to the Coverage on Kids’s Well being. The 2021 coverage expands the definition of youngsters’s environmental well being to incorporate not solely conception, infancy, adolescence, and early maturity, but additionally the impression that early exposures might have later in life. This coverage additionally reinforces the Biden-Harris Administration’s dedication to fairness and threats to kids’s well being attributable to local weather change.
The 1997 Govt Order instructed all federal companies to “make it a excessive precedence to establish and assess environmental well being dangers and security dangers which will disproportionately have an effect on kids;” and “make sure that its insurance policies, packages, actions, and requirements deal with disproportionate dangers to kids that outcome from environmental well being or security dangers.” This order introduced elevated federal concentrate on the essential matter of youngsters’s well being, the inspiration of all individuals’s development and improvement.
The Govt Order additionally established the President’s Activity Pressure on Environmental Well being Dangers and Security Dangers to Kids, a cupboard stage group of 17 companies and departments co-chaired by EPA Administrator Regan and U.S. Division of Well being and Human Providers Secretary Xavier Becerra. The principals of the Activity Pressure met in October 2021 to resume the federal dedication to the objectives of the interagency workgroup. The Activity Pressure leverages every Company’s distinctive experience to handle points comparable to childhood bronchial asthma disparities, lead poisoning, and local weather and disasters, and publicity of youngsters to pesticides and different dangerous chemical compounds.
To commemorate the previous 25 years of youngsters’s well being at EPA, OCHP Director Jeanne Briskin printed an EPA Views article on kids’s environmental well being. It contains sources for fogeys, caregivers and lecturers on defending kids from environmental threats the place they reside, be taught and play. Director Briskin additionally hosted a dialogue with former EPA Administrator Carol Browner, present deputy EPA Administrator Janet McCabe and Ramona Trovato, the primary OCHP Director, to debate EPA’s work to guard kids’s well being. The dialogue highlighted key milestones that influenced how EPA protects kids from environmental exposures, actions to guard kids’s well being sooner or later, and rising kids’s environmental well being points. View the dialogue broadcast.
America’s Kids and the Atmosphere, a great tool for evaluating kids’s environmental well being, was lately up to date with the most recent information and enhanced the net options. The replace encompasses a modernized digital format to research traits, obtain information, inform choices to enhance kids’s well being, and establish methods to attenuate environmental impacts on kids. EPA has maintained this information for almost 20 years and can proceed so as to add extra updates within the years to return.