CHEJ Highlights: 1980 – 2010


Superfund legislation is created, in part thanks to the work of the “Mother of Superfund,” Lois Gibbs.


Lois Gibbs founds the Center for Health, Environment, & Justice.


Since 1982 there has not been one new commercial hazardous waste dumpsite built.  Not because it is no longer legal – but because the American people will not allow it.


CHEJ holds first Leadership Development Conference to strengthen the skills of grassroots leaders across the country.


CHEJ kicks off Landfill Moratorium Campaign—only one hazardous waste landfill has been built in the 25 years since CHEJ first opened its doors.


Toxic Merry-Go-Round Campaign is created to prevent new communities from being burdened with relocated waste.


Federal Right-to-Know law passed, providing citizens with access to information about the toxins stored and disposed of in their neighborhoods.

CHEJ’s Field offices established to help grassroots groups get off the ground.

CHEJ exposes the Cerrell Report, demonstrating intentional discrimination against underserved communities.


McToxics Campaign launched to end the use of Styrofoam packaging by fast food restaurants.


Kick Ash Campaign takes off, preventing dangerous incinerator ash’s reclassification as “special waste” and disposal in municipal landfills.


CHEJ begins Community Leadership Development Grant Program (mini-grants program) for leadership training.


McDonald’s Victory – they announce they will no longer use Styrofoam packaging.


CHEJ helps build base for First National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit.


CHEJ wins Distinguished Appropriate Technology Award for our Low Income & Minority Technical Assistance Program from the National Center for Appropriate Technology, Butte, MT.


Ban the Burn Conference: CHEJ hosted 150 activities that established the Stop Incineration Network.


First Justice Day Event, with 150 environmental, women’s, voters, gay & lesbian groups and more from 32 states standing together to demand justice for all.


CHEJ launches the Stop Dioxin Campaign, resulting in a 90 percent reduction in dioxin emissions.


CHEJ helps establish “Health Care Without Harm,” which emerges as a distinct organization five years later.


Hundreds of activists attending CHEJ’s Convention march to the headquarters of the Chemical Manufacturers Association, shouting “Cancer Starts Here!”


20th Anniversary of Love Canal Crisis.  Tour and news events held so that public never forgets the human suffering and mistakes of the past.


Stop Dioxin Exposure Campaign releases new report, American People’s Dioxin Reassessment, to explain risks, sources and solutions.


Child Proofing Our Communities Campaign launched, helping to ensure our children are not unfairly burdened by toxins in their environment.


Women posing as being pregnant, with signs on the large bellies, “Warning: Dioxin is Hazardous To This Baby’s Health” greet the scientific panel reviewing the EPA Assessment report.  The women want the report released, not reviewed again. Scientists told EPA to clean up the report and get it out to the public.


BE SAFE Campaign launched to promote precautionary ideas, encouraging citizens and policymakers alike to assume questionable products to be hazardous until proven otherwise.


Green Flag Schools program kicks off, involving students in making our schools safer and healthier places to learn and play.


PVC Campaign is launched, raising the public’s awareness of the health hazards posed by PVC and convincing businesses to incorporate safer materials in their products and packaging.


CHEJ’s PVC Campaign, in collaboration with a nationwide network, convinces Crabtree & Evelyn, Target, Sears/Kmart, Microsoft, J.C. Penney, Best Buy and other to phase out PVC in products and/or packaging.


CHEJ Celebrates 25 Years!

CHEJ helps secure a federal law that prohibits the intentional chemical dosing of pregnant women and children, like the CHEERS pesticides study in Florida on low income African American women and children


CHEJ convinces the state of NY to create a Pollution Prevention Institute to assist government and corporation to reduce or eliminate their pollution.


CHEJ supports state and local groups in 13 states to pass precautionary-based chemical policy reforms. (CA,CT,FL,GA,IL,ME,MD,MN,NJ,NM ,NY,OR and WA).


Federal Toxic Toys Law phases out PVCs, phthalates and BPA in products and packaging, transforming consumer purchases and dividing the chemical industry lobby.


CHEJ’s  BE SAFE Campaign, working with a statewide network, secures a Green Purchasing Policy in New York State ($9 billion in purchasing power) that avoids 85 dangerous chemicals and serves as a model for other states.