orange county's asians and latinos are disproportionately exposed to toxic waste sites

Is toxic waste disposal colorblind? Apparently not. According to researchers at UC Irvine, Latinos and Asians in Southern California are "disproportionately exposed to toxic waste sites," putting members of affected communities "at risk for numerous diseases and disabilities": Region's Asians and Latinos "Disproportionately Exposed to Toxic Waste Sites": UCI Researchers.

Hazardous waste removal sites and manufacturing plants (producing chemical-laden petroleum products, cleaning solvents and paints) are far more likely to be located within the proximity of Latino and Asian communities:
Led by John Hipp, UCI associate professor of criminology, law & society, the research team analyzed about 3,000 Southern Californian census tracts and found that Latino and Asian communities are more adversely effected by toxic waste proximity than both Caucasian and African-Americans.

Tracts with 15 percent more Latinos than average were a staggering 84.3 percent more exposed to toxic waste. Tracts with 15 percent more Asians than average were 33.7 percent more exposed to toxic waste.

In stark contrast, tracts with higher levels of residents with bachelor's degrees are exposed to 88.8 percent less toxic waste.
Those are some huge numbers. We're talking about toxic waste! It's possible that some immigrants may not fully grasp the risks of living close to toxic waste sites. Many residents are just unaware of how close they are to toxicity, while other don't have much an option -- it's not as though people knowingly chose to live near toxic waste. Are education and outreach the key? (Thanks, Vickie.)

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