A victory for farmworkers and children: the ban on chlorpyrifos. The pesticide has been linked to developmental problems in children. The Farmworker Association of Florida is part of the movement that made it happen.
Video: our Homestead Area organizer Claudia Gonzalez interviewed by NBC Miami on the ban on clorpyrifos.
The ban is great news for farmworkers and their children. For all children actually, since they could ingest the pesticide simply by eating fruit or vegetables, or be exposed to it by living near a farm or going to school near one.
Clorpyrifos is a widely used pesticide on food crops. Research links exposure to the pesticide to lower birth weights, reduced I.Q.s and other developmental problems in children. Some of the health effects can be traced back to prenatal exposure.
Fighting for decades
As part of a coalition of groups: Earthjustice, United Farm Workers and more – from bee defenders to organizations advocating for children with disabilities, the Farmworker Association of Florida has fought for this ban for decades. We joined lawsuits and educated legislators in Washington about chlorpyrifos.
“The Farmworker Association of Florida is proud of the work we and allies have put in for this victory, and grateful for everyone’s efforts to make this happen.”
In 2015 chlorpyrifos was partially banned. With the other advocacy groups, we kept working to get the pesticide banned not just from households but also from the fields. In 2020, the Trump administration did the opposite by overturning the ban altogether. This triggered a lot of lawsuits. Finally, our efforts resulted in the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banning chlorpyrifos for use on food crops on August 18, 2021.
Towards a complete ban
Nezahualcoyotl Xiuhtecutli, general coordinator of the Farmworker Association of Florida commented “The Farmworker Association of Florida is proud of the work we and allies have put in for this victory, and grateful for everyone’s efforts to make this happen. However, farmworkers working with ornamental plants and their families continue to be exposed to this harmful pesticide and we will continue our work until chlorpyrifos is completely banned from use.”