United Church of Christ Commission for Racial Justice
I n January 1986, The Commission for Racial Justice of the United Church of Christ initiated two major research projects designed to determine if there was a relationship between the treatment, storage, and disposal of hazardous waste and the racial composition of the areas where these facilities were located. The first study concentrated on commercial hazardous waste facilities; the second on toxic waste sites. These two studies were the first in the United States to consider the issue of locating hazardous waste sites in minority communities, and the ensuing national report was instrumental in bringing the issue of “environmental racism” to the attention of environmentalists, policy makers, and the general public.
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