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Triangle moms head to D.C. to demand action on toxic chemicals

From the good folks at the N.C. Conservation Network:

“A group of concerned Triangle mothers is packing up their children and heading to Washington, D.C., Monday morning to demand that Congress protect families from toxic chemicals in common consumer products.

In the nation’s capital, they’ll ask North Carolina’s Congressional delegation for stronger laws on toxic chemicals and join hundreds of other parents from more than 40 states in a ‘stroller brigade,’ a ‘show and tell’ on toxics and a march to the Senate.

‘As a mother, it’s nearly impossible to find products free of toxic chemicals and those that are can be out of my price range,’ said Tina Sherman of Cary. ‘Washington should protect pregnant women and children from toxic chemicals in toys, car seats, teething rings, baby food jars and other everyday products. It’s as simple as that.’

The federal law regulating toxic chemicals, The Toxic Substances Control Act, has not been updated in nearly four decades. In recent years, a growing movement of parents from across the country has pushed Congress to update and reform the outdated and ineffective law.

Now, the Senate is considering the Chemical Safety Improvement Act – the first bipartisan effort to strengthen toxic standards since the TSCA passed in 1976 – but the public health community and local moms say it doesn’t go far enough.

‘The Chemical Safety Improvement Act, as drafted, is too weak. It doesn’t adequately protect pregnant women, children and vulnerable communities and it also puts up red tape in phasing out some of the worst chemicals,’ said Melea Rose Waters of Raleigh. ‘We also want states to be able to pass their own toxic chemical laws, another glaring omission in the bill.’

Even more troubling, in the first two quarters of this year alone, the chemical lobby has deployed hundreds of lobbyists and spent a staggering $30 million to fight meaningful toxic chemical regulations.

Toxic chemicals have been found in common household cleaners, children’s products and building materials, even though many are linked to cancer, birth defects, early puberty, asthma and other serious conditions. The same toxic chemicals are found in air pollution, drinking water, the Great Lakes and “hot spot” communities.

Two vans of moms and children will depart from 7 Beech Slope Way in Durham at 9:30 a.m. on Monday. The group will be making signs and decorating their vans to spread the message about toxic chemicals from here to D.C.

The media is invited to attend the sendoff.”

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