Protecting Children's Environmental Health in Region 8
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Why Focus on Children's Health?
- Compared to adults, children eat proportionately more food, drink more fluids and breathe more air than adults. As a result, they are exposed to more pollutants per pound of body weight than adults.
- Children may be more vulnerable than adults to environmental hazards because their systems are still developing, often making them less able to metabolize, detoxify and excrete toxins.
- Their behavior patterns increase their exposure to potential toxics.
- Children are least able to protect themselves.
- They have a longer life expectancy.
- Fewer than half of the synthetic chemicals that have been developed and released to the environment have been tested for potential human toxicity, fewer still, for their potential effects on children.
- Children represent 25 percent of our population but 100 percent of our future.
At EPA, protecting children from environmental health risks is fundamental to our vision of making the world a better place for future generations.
What does the Region 8 Children's Environmental Health (CEH) Program Do?
The goals of the Region 8 CEH Program are to:
- Support Regional programs and help develop expertise in CEH to further the protection of children’s health.
- Develop federal, state, tribal, and local level capacity in CEH to enhance their ability to take positive actions to improve children's environmental health where children live, learn and play.
- Encourage prevention of exposures to chemicals and products that present a potential hazard to children.
The Region 8 Children’s Environmental Health (CEH) Program supports the vision, mission and goals of EPA’s Office of Children’s Health Protection. The program is led by a Regional CEH Coordinator who works with a Regional workgroup formed by representatives from a number of programs in the Region responsible for activities to protect children from environmental contaminants. The purpose of the CEH workgroup is to share information and resources across programs internally and externally, and closely coordinate Regional activities in order to maximize limited children’s health protection related resources and better serve our communities.
The objectives of the Regional CEH Program are to:
- Help Regional media and multi-media programs be successful in their efforts to protect children’s health and to meet their program goals and outcomes.
- Build partnerships with federal, state and tribal agencies and NGOs to help develop capacity in CEH and expand and establish programs that improve the environments where children live, learn and play.
- Conduct activities to increase the ability of public health professionals to identify, prevent, and reduce environmental health threats to children.
- Communicate information to the public about steps that individuals can take to protect children’s health.