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Indybay Feature
Fri Nov 3 2017 (Updated 11/04/17)
Day of the Dead Action Demands Ban on Chlorpyrifos
Health Advocates in San Joaquin Valley Press State to Suspend Deadly Pesticide
Spicing up their press conference with a Day of the Dead theme, health advocates from Fresno, Tulare, and Kern Counties rallied outside the central regional office of the Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) on November 1 in Clovis. Their action is part of a continuing campaign to get DPR to urge the state to suspend agricultural use of brain-harming chlorpyrifos.

“We are disappointed with DPR’s approach on chlorpyrifos by asking for more studies and thus leaving Californians susceptible to the continued threat of long-term harm,” said Fidelia Morales, outreach coordinator for Coalition Advocating for Pesticide Safety (CAPS). “DPR needs to stop ignoring US EPA science—they need to start thinking about community health first.”

The activists delivered a letter endorsed by 18 regional environmental justice groups and by Erin Brockovich urging suspension of the deadly pesticide. Dozens of agricultural workers near Bakersfield became sick from a pesticide drift of chlorpyrifos last May, just weeks after the Trump administration deemed the controversial chemical safe to use. Health advocates say that twenty years of research links the pesticide to neurological disorders in children. High exposure to it can result in respiratory paralysis or be fatal.

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Related Features: Air Testing Shows Unsafe Levels of Brain-Harming Pesticide in Kern County | Trump Administration Waives Water-Protection Rule for California Oilfields | Tulare County Has Most Agricultural Pesticide Illnesses in California | EPA Failed to Protect the Health of Latino Schoolchildren
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