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E-M:/ Senate Democratic Environmental Task Force

Enviro-Mich message from "Margaret Schulte" <MSchulte@senate.michigan.gov>

April 30, 2004						          	

First of Three Environmental Task Force Forums 

Senator Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor) will host a community-wide meeting on
Thursday, May 13 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Washtenaw Community
College, Morris Lawrence Building, Room 101, Ann Arbor to discuss the
state of Michigan's environment.  The program will include
presentations by Dr. Michael D. Cabana, MD, MPH with the Department of
General Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases at the University of
Michigan School of Medicine, and Kate Weber of LocalMotion, an
organization dedicated to raising public awareness of the link between
environmental toxins and children's health.  Brater will also be
joined by Senate colleagues and task force members Mickey Switalski
(D-Roseville) and Martha Scott (D-Detroit).  The forum is sponsored by a
Senate Democratic task force to study the impacts of key environmental
issues on the health of Michigan children.

"We're focusing on children because children eat more, drink more,
and breathe more per pound than adults and thus may ingest more
pollution and toxins per pound of body weight than adults," Brater
says. "Children also spend more time out-of-doors than adults,
exposing them to disproportionate amounts of air and soil pollution."

The focus on children is also a response to their vulnerability to
environmental hazards like lead paint, with their bodies absorbing 50
percent of the lead they ingest compared to a 10 percent rate in adults.
 Also, because their systems are still developing, children are more
susceptible to environmental threats.  A pollution exposure that would
not harm an adult may cause lifelong problems for a child because of
their longer life spans and evolving central nervous systems.

The environmental forum is one of three such task force sessions being
held across southeast Michigan during the next several weeks hosted by
the Senators.  The second forum, hosted by Sen. Scott, will be held in
Highland Park on Thursday, May 21st to discuss lead poisoning
prevention.  The meeting will be held at the Highland Park Career
Academy, Glendale at Second.  Sen. Switalski will host a third forum on
June 3rd at Metro Beach in Harrison Township addressing clean beaches. 
Both are expected to be joined by a panel of experts on the topics.

For more information on the Town Meetings, call 517/373-2406.

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