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Pest Control Practices in CT Public Schools

Full text of report
Summary of Findings
Summary of Data
Recommendations

Resulting Legislation

Public Act No. 07-168: An Act Banning Pesticide Use on School Grounds

Public Act No. 05-252: An Act Concerning Pesticides at Schools and Day Care Facilities

Public Act No. 99-165: An Act Concerning Notice of Pesticide Applications at Schools and Day Care Centers

Introduction

Health experts and the public are increasingly concerned about children’s exposure to pesticides. Environment & Human Health, Inc. has conducted a survey of pest control practices in Connecticut public schools in order to judge the magnitude of the problem, and to look at the potential for instituting safer pest control methods that would ensure the protection of our children’s health.

During the past decade, environmental health experts have increasingly recognized the special health threats faced by children when exposed to pesticides and other toxic substances. Children’s physiological susceptibility and their particular patterns of exposure are the dominant factors contributing to heightened risk. There is broad expert acceptance of the conclusion that laws and regulations have not sufficiently protected children from pesticide- related health threats. Congress recognized the vulnerability of children by passing the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996, following recommendations by the National Academy of Sciences in 1993 that special safety factors be adopted to ensure protection of America’s infants and children from pesticide residues in food, drinking water and other environments. This problem has become a top priority within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which recently created the Office of Children’s Health.

Although considerable federal regulatory attention has been given to food and water contamination by pesticides, little attention has been directed toward pesticide contamination of indoor environments. Even less is known about pesticide use in schools, children’s exposures and associated health threats. The amount of time children spend within the school environment (normally 6-7 hours per day, for 180 days per year) guarantees that if schools become contaminated, there is a potential for significant childhood exposure and risk.

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