Our right to a healthy environment

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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In Wednesday Journal's "The mystery of the missing mosquitos" [Inside Report, Aug. 14], you ask, "What gives?" Oak Park Environmental Network (OPEN) seconds your question.

WJ describes 2013 with plenty of rain, yet "no bumper crop" of mosquitos and 2012 as a drought year, where mosquitos seemed to take the summer off. Who's making decisions about our health at the Mosquito Abatement District (MAD)? Who are the board members?

On Thursday evening, Aug. 15, I received a call with a woman's recording that said, "This is a message from ?? We have detected that this is an answering machine. If this is actually a human, please press one. Otherwise, wait for your message. (Male Voice): Hello. This is a message from the Oak Park Department of Public Health. The Des Plaines Valley Mosquito Abatement District will be spraying in Oak Park, after 9 p.m., Monday, August 19, 2013, weather permitting, as part of its program to control the West Nile Virus." The website is www.deplainesvalleyMAD.com.

On July 29, I dropped off a letter to Oak Park's president and six trustees regarding pesticide spraying for the West Nile Virus. There has yet to be a response.

I asked: [Besides humans] "Is WNV spraying affecting our organic gardens, food and flowers, bees, butterflies, chickens, wildlife? [I forgot trees, dogs, cats and swimming pools.] How could OP's Board of Health and Environmental Commission work together with residents for answers toward a toxin-free Oak Park?"

Would that OP officials obey Article 11 of Illinois' Constitution: "The public policy of the State and the duty of each person is to provide and maintain a healthful environment for the benefit of this and future generations. … Each person has the right to a healthful environment."

Barbara Mullarkey

OPEN spokesperson

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