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Grassroots Action
February/March
(Previous Actions)

Action of the Month
Part I and II:
New Organic Lawn Care Factsheet/Spring Alert

Download Materials

NEW FACTSHEET FOR DISSEMINATION
Our new factsheet, Read Your "Weeds"- A Simple Guide to Creating a Healthy Lawn, is here! We need your to help to disseminate it throughout your community. You can print and distribute it, send it to your home and garden (or lifestyle) editor of your local paper, or just hand it to your neighbors!

SPRING ALERT
It's almost spring and soon those little yellow pesticide caution signs, signaling a pesticide application, will be popping up everywhere. Unfortunately, in states that do no even have notification laws, you will receive no notice that you are being exposed to toxic chemicals.

We have two important actions for our over 800 Coalition members. First is a “Spring Alert” flyer that informs your community about the dangers of pesticide exposure, and what those yellow signs mean. The Spring Alert was originally produced by Port Washington Citizens for Alternatives to Pesticides (now Grassroots Environmental Education), and has been used as a key piece of their 10-year public outreach efforts in New York. The Spring Alert has been used or adapted by many communities here and in Canada, including the Marblehead Pesticide Awareness Committee (MPAC) who worked with their Board of Health to distribute it across their community.

You can ask your local Departments of Health, physician, or medical community to endorse and distribute it. Last year, as part of Grassroots Healthy Lawn Program, Grassroots Environmental Education distributed 65,000 copies of the Spring Alert to every school district and pre-K in Westchester county! See their original version www.grassrootsinfo.org/pub/springalert.pdf, and the Spanish version at www.grassrootsinfo.org/pub/springalert_spanish.pdf.

Pat Beckett, Co-chair of MPAC, says, “We always felt the little yellow warning signs on lawns, were “too little, too late” in terms of pesticide awareness. As part of our “Awareness through Education” campaign with the Board of Health, the Board sent out the Spring Alert in the following ways: through the school system with a copy going home in each child’s school bag; through a general mailing to every household; and, once as a public service announcement in our local newspaper. I think the Spring Alert would also make a great hand-out for local realtors to give to new homeowners in town.”

HOW CAN YOU USE THE SPRING ALERT?

1. Download a generic version and add your local information.
2. Get it endorsed by your local or county health department, or medical community.
3. Find Partners and medium to send it out, some suggestions include:

  • Superintendant of Schools- kids take-home letter
  • Municipal Officials (Health or Water Department)- through property tax, water bills
  • Community Health Centers – office flyer
  • Newspaper, Television or Radio - public service announcement
  • Real Estate Agencies – new homebuyer packages
  • Pediatrician/Doctors Offices – office flyers
  • Veternarian Offices – office flyers

Let us know your ideas and we will add them to this list!

If you do not have notification laws and would like to work on passing a Notification Law in your state, please contact Eileen Gunn at info@beyondpesticides.org to join our Policy Workgroup.