33 results for author: Jamie Pang


Eco-Healthy Homes: safer children’s spaces at Hacienda CDC

Many people these days are familiar with the fact that products for the home, from toys to cleaning products, can contain toxic chemicals. This fact alone is cause for concern. But, did you know that women, children, people of color and people living on lower incomes are at a greater risk of toxic chemical exposure?  Or that access to consumer safety information may not be available to non-english speakers? Or that, because of their small size, kids are much more vulnerable to the health impacts of exposure to toxic products?  In 2020, OEC partnered with Hacienda CDC, an affordable housing provider in Portland,to host focus groups to educate ...

Eco-Healthy Cleaning & Disinfecting For Children’s Spaces


Climate Change is Impacting Youth Mental Health

Do you find yourself or the youth in your life feeling anxious or depressed over the idea of climate change? A new study shows this is a problem sweeping Oregon and beyond. The Oregon Health Authority just released a report, Climate Change and Youth Mental Health in Oregon, documenting the impacts of climate change on the mental health of youth (ages 15-25). This study was completed under the direction of Governor Brown’s Executive Order 20-04, also known as the Oregon Climate Action Plan. The study, one of the largest in the nation to date, documents a growing youth mental health crisis in Oregon. Climate stressors, including climate anxiety, ...

Oregon adopts permanent worker protections for heat and smoke just in time for this summer’s extreme weather events

Victory! OEC and our coalition of environmental, health and science, small business, and labor partners have spent the last year and a half staunchly advocating for the most protective workplace regulations possible in Oregon. We’re happy to announce that the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) responded with new, permanent rules that will hopefully set the tone for a new national standard. The heat and smoke rulemakings are a response to Governor Brown’s Executive Order 20-04, which mandated Oregon OSHA to develop these standards in order to protect workers on the job from excessive heat and smoke.  It is no ...

Grinchlike behavior: Toy Association delivers lawsuit against safer toys just in time for the New Year

In one of the most Grinch-like moves of 2021, American Apparel, the Toy Association, and its member coalition- Safe to Play, filed a lawsuit during the week of Christmas, in an effort to ensure that they can continue delivering toxic toys to Oregon kids.  They claim that the final rules of Oregon’s Toxic Free Kids Act (TFKA) is preempted based on the  Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA) and Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA), and that compliance with phaseouts, especially if they have to pay the fees to apply for waivers, will cause them “irreparable harm.” This move came six and a half years after TFKA was enacted, and over 9 months ...

Hold the wrapping paper! Most of that gift-wrap is not eco-friendly nor recyclable

It is that time of year again—no matter what holiday you celebrate, or what religion you subscribe to, it is difficult to be unaffected by the enthusiasm of the season of giving and reflection. It is predicted that the average American will spend $942 on holiday gifts this year. It is no secret that as consumerism spreads, landfills also fill up, and the Earth suffers.   According to Stanford University, Americans throw away 25% more trash during the Thanksgiving to New Year's holiday period than any other time of year. And most of that holiday wrap is not eco-friendly or recyclable. A whopping 40% of the world’s industrial logging goes into ...

Removing Barriers to Safe Home Cleaning Products

Many popular and inexpensive home cleaning products contain toxic chemicals. There are alternatives, but they can be expensive or require extra steps. What happens when those barriers are removed? OEC partnered with Hacienda CDC to find out. Hacienda CDC Eco- Healthy Home Survey In the Fall/Winter of 2020, socially distanced, in-person focus groups and bilingual online surveys were held in Hacienda CDC’s housing communities to listen to residents' concerns about toxic chemicals in the home. COVID-19 hit the Latino/x community particularly hard, and the increased levels of disinfecting increased families’ and kids’ exposure to dozens of ...

Summer isn’t the only time to worry about woodsmoke

As we roll into fall, many people start cleaning out their wood-burning stoves and fireplaces to start heating their homes, or just to get that cozy ambiance. What many people don’t realize is that, when a lot of people are burning wood in their homes, the cumulative effect on air quality can be similar to a wildfire. OEC has been advocating to reduce harmful air pollution from urban wood fires and to provide healthier options for those that rely on woodburning as a primary heat source.   Specifically, OEC has been working closely with Woodsmoke Free Portland and the Multnomah County Board of Commissioners over the past six months on the Multno...

Without TFKA expansions, OHA forced to choose 5 chemicals to regulate

There’s thousands of potentially harmful chemicals in products that are marketed to kids. As of now, OHA can regulate just a few of them. We need to change that.  In 2015, OEC’s advocacy lead to the passage of a groundbreaking law, the Toxics Free Kids Act (TFKA), which required manufacturers of children's products sold in Oregon to report certain products containing High Priority Chemicals of Concern for Children’s Health (HPCCCH) (“high priority chemical list”), and ultimately phase them out. However, the chemical and toy industry successfully limited the law, so that the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) could not regulate more than five ...

Centering Frontline Voices: Oregon OSHA Enacts Heat & Smoke Rules

In a summer already marked by unprecedented temperatures and a devastating wildfire season, OEC and its partners pressed Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to adopt a health-first standard when it comes to protecting vulnerable workers from climate hazards. As part of EO-20-04 (OCAP), Governor Kate Brown directed Oregon OSHA to develop standards in order to protect frontline workers from excessive heat caused by climate change and wildfire smoke exposure. We know that not everyone is equally impacted by climate change. Frontline essential workers such as farmworkers, bus drivers, and warehouse workers are paid less ...