Toxic Tour

Organized by the Sustainable South Bronx (SSBx), the Toxic Tour can be an eye-opening experience. I came to this walking tour with youth from the Civic Action Education Program at the Rocking the Boat run by Chrissy Word. Usually these young people help the local communities to improve the environment through restoration. But today they were just learning from Marta Rodrigues in SSBx about environmental problems in the Hunts Point neighborhood in the South Bronx. In short, Marta suggests that the Hunts Point belongs to the poorest congressional district in the nation with the highest rate of asthma in residents, and very little access to natural sites. Local residents, most of whom are Latino and African-American, experience the disproportionate density of industrial facilities and prisons in the Hunts Point. Marta has also acknowledged that bottom-up initiatives have recently brought the first public parks in this neighborhood, but a lot still has to be done to make this area a safer environment for urban residents.

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