We all have the right to breathe clean air. This seems like a basic right, but I wonder why I find myself fighting again and again for stronger clean air regulations. And when it comes to our children and our schools I have no words. I think about the amount of time my kids spend in school each day and I wonder what they’re coming in contact with. I wonder if there’s a correlation between the reports showing asthma and childhood cancer on the rise. My concerns are real and they’re troubling, but they’re not enough to push me to home school. What they will do is keep me fighting for clean air.
Blog Action Day
Today is Blog Action Day, a day when bloggers from different countries, interests and languages join together to blog about one important global topic on the same day. This years thousands of blogs from all around the world are sharing their thoughts on Human Rights.
What is a Human Right?
Human rights are basic rights and freedoms that everyone is entitled to regardless of nationality, sex, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, language, or other status.
We’ve all heard of the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, taken straight from the Declaration of Independence. Well there’s more. We’re all entitled to the freedom of expression, the right to food, shelter and the right to work and receive an education. These rights might sound relatively basic, but they’re not a given for many people around the globe. The right to breathe clean air is something that we should all be able to take for granted, but in our present world we can’t.
Clean Air in Our Schools Should be a Fundamental Right
Did you know that indoor levels of air pollutants can be two to five times higher than outdoor levels? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that up to half of all the nation’s schools have problems with indoor environmental quality. This is so disturbing on so many levels, mainly because children are so vulnerable since their bodies are still growing and their immune systems aren’t fully developed.
Here’s what’s contributing to unhealthy air in our schools:
- Idling cars
- Bus emissions and idling
- Inadequate ventilation systems
- Toxic chemicals in cleaning products
- Toxic chemicals in school supplies
- Pesticides used in and around the school
- Radon, mold and asbestos
How We Can Help
- Pay attention to the school supplies you send into school. Make sure you opt for the non-toxic version of wipes, hand sanitizers and other products.
- Check out the EPA’s Tools for Schools Program, which helps schools identify, resolve and prevent indoor air quality problems using low- and no-cost measures.
- Ask Congress to update our laws on toxic chemicals.
We all have the right to breathe clean air, don’t we?
Check out these inspiring Blog Action Day posts:
- A human right to toxic free living – Blog Action Day 2013
- It’s #BlogActionDay and My Smartphone May Be Violating Your #HumanRights
- A Clean And Healthy Planet Is A Human Right
- Blog Action Day, Education as a Human Right & Our Changing Climate