FACES Group Calls for Health Board to Clean Up, Close Down General Chemical
FACES (the Framingham Action Coalition for Environmental Safety), a group formed by a handful of South Framingham residents, is now calling for the Framingham Board of Health to take action against General Chemical.
Press release from the FACES organization:
Before the second Framingham Board of Health hearing concerning General Chemical tomorrow, Nov. 3, a growing number of organizations, churches and individuals have come together to urge action against the hazardous waste transfer station.
FACES (the Framingham Action Coalition for Environmental Safety), a group initially formed by a handful of South Framingham residents, has expanded its reach far beyond the immediate neighborhood.
In addition to more than 50 individuals, 13 groups have signed on as supporters of FACES’ effort to clean up and close down General Chemical. Supporting organizations include Toxics Action Center, Conservation Law Foundation, MassCOSH, the Framingham Coalition, the Brazilian Alliance, and three local churches.
Rafael Mares, a staff attorney with Conservation Law Foundation, said, "The Conservation Law Foundation supports the great work of FACES to protect residents of their neighborhood – as well as the children who attend elementary school there–from exposure to hazardous substances from the General Chemical site. CLF is alarmed that this facility has not been cleaned up yet and is allowed to continue to operate although its owner, General Chemical, is violating a long list of provisions in its permit.”
Pastor Fernando Siqueira from the Marlboro Assembly of God has two children who attend the Woodrow Wilson Elementary School, which is located adjacent to General Chemical. He supports the work of FACES to clean up and close down General Chemical.
“It is unbelievable that here in the United States there can be a facility operating with under such poor conditions. Something has to be done," he said.
Taryn Hallweaver, a community organizer with Toxics Action Center, said this is not an isolated issue.
“The problem with General Chemical,” she explained, “Is that the problem extends beyond General Chemical. The contaminated plume underneath the facility has affected homes and entire neighborhoods. The nearby school is affected. This is an issue that affects the whole community. It’s clear that the time has come for the Board of Health to take action and rescind their site assignment.”
Wesley Desouza, a FACES member and Framingham resident, said the outpouring of support for the General Chemical effort has been hugely welcomed by FACES, and he echoed serious concerns about the facility.
“General Chemical can afford to run their business well and clean up the contamination. With all of their money, why are they doing such a bad job running the business?," Desouza said.
Tomorrow night, Nov. 3 the Board of Health will continue its hearing on the General Chemical’s site assignment, which hasn’t been reviewed by the Framingham Board of Health since 1994. The hearing is at Wilson Elementary, 169 Leland St.