Empowering Communities, Advocating Solutions



For immediate release:
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
For more information contact:
Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director, 516-390-7150, 631-384-1378 (mobile), aesposito@citiznescampaign.org


Child Safe Playing Fields Act goes into effect – No more toxic pesticides on school playgrounds!

Albany, NY- One year after the landmark Child Safe Playing Fields Act was signed into law in New York State; the law takes effect on May 18, 2011. The law bans the use of aesthetic pesticides on playing fields and green spaces at schools K-12 and day care facilities throughout New York State.

“The archaic practice of poisoning children’s playgrounds has come to an end at New York State schools and day care facilities,” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director, Citizens Campaign for the Environment. “Our children will no longer be needlessly exposed to toxic aesthetic pesticides that contribute to a myriad of short and long term health problems. This law will make a real difference in protecting children’s health and save schools money.”

The growing body of peer reviewed scientific evidence indicates that that pesticide exposure can adversely affect a child's neurological, respiratory, immune, and endocrine system, even at low levels. Long-term exposure to pesticides has also been linked to cancer, including non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The US Environmental Protection Agency, National Academy of Sciences, American Public Health Association, and many others have recognized the dangers that pesticides pose to children’s health, and the need to limit exposure as much as possible.

Numerous municipalities, school districts, individual schools, and some states, have already chosen to adopt policies that require a school to prohibit the use of toxic pesticides, and instead, use readily available and affordable non-toxic alternatives. Time and time again, schools that have eliminated toxic pesticide use are reporting effective pest management and significant long-term financial savings. Studies show that after the first two years, schools save 7 percent to 25 percent annually by not purchasing toxic chemicals.

In 2006, CCE successfully advocated for passage of similar legislation to ban pesticides at K-8 schools in Connecticut, which was implemented in 2010.


Citizens Campaign for the Environment (CCE) empowers communities and advocates solutions for our shared environment and public health and is supported by over 80,000 members throughout New York State and Connecticut. www.citizenscampaign.org

updated by bsmith  5/17/11