Assemblyman Crespo Joins Effort to Demand Testing and Clean-Up of PCB's in NYC Public Schools

October 29, 2010

Assemblyman Crespo joins NY Communities for Change and other labor and advocacy groups to collect signatures from parents and teachers to demand that the NYC Dept. of Education complete the testing and removal of all PCB contaminants in NYC Public School Buildings.

This past Tuesday, October 26th, Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo Joined NY Communities for Change, New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, representatives from the UFT, other labor organizations, and parents, outside a dozen potentially contaminated NYC public schools as part of a citywide movement to demand that DOE and EPA rid all NYC schools of PCB’s.

PCBs – chemicals which have been proven to pose serious risks to children’s nervous and immune systems and brain development – are currently found in products like window caulk and lighting fixtures in public schools across New York City. Recent results from a pilot study conducted by the NYC Department of Education and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found significantly elevated levels of PCBs in two of three schools tested, with levels at the third also above guidances, putting thousands of kids at risk. There is every reason to believe that many schools out of the nearly 700 built or renovated between 1950 and the late 1970s will be similarly contaminated.

As children filed into their classrooms, parents, teachers, and school employees had the opportunity to sign a petition demanding the immediate, comprehensive testing of all schools built or renovated during the time PCB's were used in building materials. Over 70 signatures were collected by Assemblyman Crespo at his location and over 500 signatures were collected at citywide events on that morning.