Nearly three weeks after Cesar E. Chavez’s birthday, the United Farm Workers continue to work for the rights of farm workers. Working conditions for farm workers have been historically unsafe, unsanitary, and unacceptable until community and environmental activists stepped in to make a change. For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has allowed the use of a dangerous pesticide called methyl iodide despite concern from activists, scientists, scholars, and farm workers. In order to stop it, we need to act NOW!
Methyl Iodide is a chemical found in pesticides that is known to cause cancer, neurological damage, and late-term miscarriages. This chemical is dangerous to those that work with it and to those that live in neighboring communities. The California Scientific Review Committee, CREDO Action, and the United Farm Workers are among a few of the different forces coming together to stop the use of this dangerous pesticide. In 2007, more than 50 scientists and scholars sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency warning of this hazardous chemical. For years, the $2 billion industry has ignored what scientists have called, “one of the most toxic chemicals on earth.” Due to the hard work of activists and a public outcry for an alternative to methyl iodide, the EPA announced that they will reconsider their choice of using the pesticide.
These businesses are affecting our bodies, our health, our environment. Farm workers deserve to work in safe environments and their health should not be a cost of work. Help the United Farm Workers reach their goal of 200,000 signatures by signing their petition.
Picture courtesy of reallynatural.com