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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Toxic Tour a Success for NYPIRG Organization

    The Stony Brook chapter of the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG),local community groups, Students Putting an End to Cancer (SPEC), other StonyBrook students, and local legislator, Vivian Fisher, joined together for whatthey termed a Toxic Tour on April 6th.

    The tour was part of Citizen Works ‘Big Business Day,’ a movementconsisting of communities and campuses across the nation participating in eventsto challenge corporate power. The ‘igrave;Toxic Tour’icirc; traveled to varioussites around Suffolk in order to urge that the State Superfund Program is refinancedand cleanup standards are not lowered.

    The main goal of the participants was to pass a proposal to refund the Superfund.The Superfund is money that is used to clean toxic waste sites. The fund recentlywent bankrupt, and so there has been no money available to clean waste sitesthat may be harmful to the health of many individuals living by these sites.

    The tour, which had been planned for several months was set up to show thelocal community how toxic dumps are affecting them.

    During this tour, three toxic dumpsites were visited, Lawrence Aviation inPort Jefferson Station, Glaro Inc. in Hauppauge, and Huntington Town Landfillin East Northport. At these sites speakers from the various groups talked abouthow toxic dump sites affect the health of citizens that live near them, andlocal community members presented each of the polluting companies with a ‘BadNeighbor of the Year Award.’

    The speakers talked about the Superfund and how it could help the people ofthe community. Speakers included NYPIRG environmental Associate Edward Vale,US Congressman Steve Israel, Suffolk County Legislator Vivian Fisher, Directorof the Brentwood/Bayshore Breast Cancer Coalition Elsa Ford, the Sierra Club,New Cassel Environmental Justice Project and SPEC founder Brad Jerson.

    Participants said the event was successful because public awareness was increasedabout this issue, as there was live media coverage by news 12.

    According to those involved with the event, the point of speaking about thisissue and having media coverage is to make people want to help pass this proposalby calling their governors and voicing their thoughts on this.

    NYPIRG intern Kavita Tanguturi said that this event had a positive impact.

    She believes that having the local assembly on their side helped to prove theirpoint and get the public to listen.

    ‘Overall, this event proved to be successful,’ she said.

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