Californians for Pesticide Reform Turns 20!
More than 170 converge on Sac for a Day of Action and celebratory lunch
Community members from farming communities across the state rallied in Sacramento on July 12 for a Day of Action on behalf of California schoolchildren, marking the 20th Anniversary of the coalition.
After holding a press conference, participants delivered an organizational sign-on letter with 107 signatories and more than 27,000 petition signatures to CalEPA and the Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR), repeating the coalition's call for one-mile pesticide-free buffer zones around schools, increased notification, more and better air monitoring, and support for farmers to transition to sustainable alternative pest management methods.
After the rally, we all gathered for a celebratory luncheon to mark CPR's 20th anniversary.
No party would be complete without cake and song!
On a day when the coalition gathered to demand protections for school children, it was fitting that the
Organizational Leadership Award was jointly awarded to the California Teachers Association and California Federation of Teachers. On hand to accept the awards were Toni Triguero for CTA, and Francisco Rodriguez, CFT executive board member. Both organizations have been propelled into a leadership role on pesticides because their members see firsthand every day in the classrooms the devastation wrought by pesticides on kids' health and potential.
For his game-changing work to ensure that communities are able to hold local authorities accountable for harmful pesticide drift, former State Senator Dean Florez received the Legislative Champion Award.
The Teresa DeAnda Community Leader Award was presented to Tulare County resident Domitila Lemus for her tireless efforts over decades to better the lives of her neighbors. The award was presented by Teresa's daughter, CPR's Kern County Organizer Valerie Gorospe. In an emotional ceremony surrounded by family, Val honored Domitila for embodying her mother's spirit and tenacity.
Much was accomplished in a single day in the Capital. "I left the day feeling inspired and motivated to continue this work for many more years," commented Paul Towers, Organizing Director for CPR Steering Committee member Pesticide Action Network. As we dispersed back to the four corners of the state, we took with us the strength of the coalition, the determination to continue to challenge the status quo, and a renewed commitment to fight for the well-being of all Californians.