We recently wrote about Malibu Unites, an inspirational coalition of concerned parents, teachers, community members, and public figures from across the U.S. who are attempting to rid our schools of toxins – including PCBs, lead, DDT, Chlordane, and carcinogenic pesticides. Now supermodel Cindy Crawford, spokesperson for Malibu Unites, has taken the fight to the airwaves, speaking with NBC news special anchor Maria Shriver about her decision to pull her two kids out of class due to major concerns about the levels of cancer-causing chemicals found in the school. Check out the video here!
In a segment that aired Tuesday on Today, Crawford told Shriver, “I look 10 years down the line. What if my kid, God forbid, had a problem? How could I live with myself, if I knew that it was a possibility, and I still sent them to school there?” Malibu Unites is concerned with all chemicals, but especially the high levels of PCBs found in local schools. PCB, a chemical banned in 1976, can still be present in older building materials, plus can leech into dirt, dust and air surrounding older buildings. Dr. Leonard Trasande, a public health expert at New York University’s School of Medicine, tells NBC, “PCBs disrupt the function of hormones in our bodies, especially thyroid hormone. They can contribute to worse brain development in children, and inability of children to perform well in school.”
Although school district officials have pledged to remove contaminated caulking at the Malibu schools say they’ll conduct periodic monitoring of air and dust for PCBs in every classroom, Crawford and other parents say it’s not enough. As Crawford says, “I don’t feel 100 percent safe. I think that air testing and wipe testings are a great piece of the puzzle. Unless they’re testing every day, how do I know that every day it’s safe for my kid?” This said, the main goal of Malibu Unites is to convince Congress to eradicate the PCBs from building materials so that schools are no longer exposed.