Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues Surrounding Environmental Health Research

Just another WordPress site

Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues Surrounding Environmental Health Research

so I think I’m your lunchtime entertainment I don’t have a PowerPoint I don’t have a picture of pictures for you and so since we are a smaller group this is going to it’ll be a little more intimate and I’d love to have it as we as I get skipped walking through this I’d love to have a lot of more interaction a little bit more educators I’m as curious about you I don’t know if your periods about me all but I’m learning a lot today um so it’s nothing I read an Environmental Policy Center at you valla Center for Environmental Policy and management and the work of the CPM centers around citizen engagement in environmental decision-making and we work with government officials and agencies and nonprofits and community groups and really anybody knocks on my door picks up my picks up the phone and calls me and who wants to be a part of decision-making processes that impact and improve their environment so it’s a really broad mission but the goal is to help folks make better decisions and empower them to figure out at what point can they do that what point and what do they need to know in order to make good decisions and so it’s not just residents but it’s also policymakers really need a lot of help in understanding what’s going on out there as well and we also work to support a wide variety of community gage scholarship and research efforts so there’s a whole push and a lot of universities to do participatory action research or have a robust engaged scholarship model and both in the hard sciences and the golfer sciences across the board clarity there’s also moves towards what’s called being called transdisciplinary research we’re beyond the interdisciplinary kind of cooperation we’ve seen over the years we also announced our athletes to bring in extra met outside of academia to engage and be full participants in the research models of all sorts and that’s really hard and it’s really messy and it’s really complicated and people get really uncomfortable with it and so one of the things that I want my son to be able to do as I grow and as I do my work is to help folks navigate that messy world the work that we currently what we kind of started as is it really work in providing a best practice guides for public officials and other you are trying to get good policy in place for Environmental Management or being more sustainable or what have you you know wide variety of topics and we do workshops and trainings we work with community members community groups we help people figure out how to talk about certain issues at the level of which the audience they’re working with needs right which varies dramatically depending on who you’re talking to and so this work brings us into contact with so many different types of researchers and numerous fields are interested in environmental impacts conservation protection health and justice I came into the field and through the world of brownfields on the sociologist my background is in social movements and political and feminist scholarship and the hit my dissertation was about the history of the Nazi Party in Munich from 1924 to 90 29 this is a funny thing right so I come into this work through this work on as working with an environment on to the brownfields you understand that having a sociological understanding of social movements and social organization and social change impacts how land gets used impact how people understand and can come together decisions about land so that’s how it started that’s where that that’s where we started to find those connections and so brownfields that in case folks don’t know vacant and abandoned and underutilized properties that have real or perceived contamination that have hindered that the redevelopment of those properties are the full use of those properties and the really crazy part of that definition is that real or perceived contamination

it drives everybody nuts in terms of that definition so it’s not really the the federal program around brownfields is not really about environmental cleanup it’s about economic redevelopment safe economic redevelopment so anyway that so so that as I said the work has this work has really centered on on helping folks understand the complexities of these types of properties and so that everyone who’s interested who has a stake in the outcomes of these properties can engage in decision-making about it in the in a in a really substantive manner most times the properties and questions have only light will have only light contamination or the contamination is really easily managed and so figuring helping folks get over that hump getting helping bankers lenders understand that and reduce that the fear of the stigma of the property helping community members understand that yeah it might be kind of ugly but let’s let’s figure it here’s how we find out how ugly it is and how scared you should be or you don’t have to be really scared it’s not that bad and here’s how you manage the minimal exposures that might be there so helping folks understand the risks involved in in redeveloping these properties is another it is another place that I come where I come to the table for this kind of work you know you can please no please don’t apologize most likely we issues come to you is it anytime bland gets sold or if there happens there have to be an environmental study demonstrated how did things end up in your back so as a son as of somebody who runs a policy center i apply for grants and that are my funding corporate comes from EPA and so I people will come to be technical assistance my website oops community about integrating equity into you lots of attorneys fee so there’s a lot of environmental stuff that we never hear about the attorney’s name about so like it so in the environmental justice world and okay so the story of meeting Matt for instance is there really good is a really wonderful story I walked into that project through a grant from when I started this work that was from Appa to increase community engagement grounded through development and economic socioeconomically disadvantaged communities so focusing on the legal Kentucky and our job was to help folks come to the table to understand city programs around brownfields redevelopment what grandfield really are risks are what the state programs are what their role and all that could be what for how bad is that if you’ve got a measure of this little soil that a whole host of different kinds of questions we ran that program for about five or secured building a community stakeholders both residential and businesses because it said former industrial court order a JC that corner the teen Street four was which is a commercial for that is really devastated lots of disinvestment lots of abandoned gas tank gasp underground storage tanks things like that and on this street

there was this a site called the better that the Buckley chemical and during the process of bringing folks together along the eighteenth Street corridor to talk about the revitalization of that it so happened that the stay at the EPA discovered that this likely chemical site still had lots of really bad chemicals sitting on it and it had migrated that right very large and some we we we reach the problem we’re talking to communities about this when I’m working with them testing and safety guard enormous safely or not they say excuse me why quiet antibody testing that human SWA but they’re not doing anything about my kids taking the book looking at my pencil now he is looking at looking at all of that nobody cares about people and so then when we had the really awful experience of heading of the culture of FDR and some other folks coming to kill each other come to protect the traffic lane to the community that all the soils contended everywhere so that was big and Garmin just don’t worry about really what they well then Matt painter table with his research and hear about all of this and he proposed to got some money to do some some sampling and some limited testing and so we’re still at the point that we have a touch patient recently but actually that and robbers what you have to build on that apposite Ori so so our work with Matt involved helping one helping and recruit books but also helping him deal with the fact that this population a lot of folks in this neighborhood self over study folks had come there are folks at U of L who had done research here and you’re not giving them the results that they you know and so we had to help manage it help manage a little bit of trust in that and help get to get that get some of that to the table but also help manage a little bit around there is a different kind of Athena that individuals want one kind of imperfect data you know once they want information so that they can either go to the doctor and get fixed where they can stoop well we were just trying to cut the blood samples and there were a lot of unanticipated pitfalls along the way for me that’s why I asked Lauren to come like for example you know I’m an adult hepatologist so I wanted adult samples welcome idli should be unique neighbors to diagnose well it’s best if you have pushy but we have some markers we had a sign perfect Arizona specific so yes I’d love to work on that would it be important I’ve learnt the limited experiences with someone like Lauren who knows a little bit more about environmental justice social identified problems before they happen and to communicate the results to people with some example on the Select limited small black project at a subject that altima

newspaper reporter that have heard the rumour all about the subject so why can’t that information and we may not get the most flattering process and the next day the subject was in the newspaper on the front page so that’s kind of a kind of shock to me it just issues of dealing with the media custom to dealing at the center was and learning how to manage manage this because you can never do do enough and people were going to get angry anger is misdirected toward someone that may be the only person that they can yell at you have to have a really strong thick skin and beyond what you you’re only accept especially if you’re walking into experienced historical and the disenfranchised on another kinds of information over the years so you’re a position of privilege or position of authority as a researcher professional is going to be a target for that and you just have to get over that and know that any of that anger is not really about you not to do with position experienced over the years but it’s also about the kind of growing distrust that all sorts of there was about research in general that we’ve experienced social engineers right yeah right you know that’s my job right and so and so it becomes a real it was really important to if you’re going to do that kind of work and if you’re going to there are Bennett to understand the benefits to you for building it something over time so you know conversations with met and with others involved thing look not publishable big opener for the solving the problem talk to the community about that anyway because L get it and you start building relationship and building away a truck militia a system of trust and a trusting relationship with folks that then can come back to you later on that when you get that next piece of honey you don’t you know someone the cases of frustrations and this is we didn’t have enough money or time to actually go up to actually test children at this point and that’s what folks are really worried about there really some of the others who you know their mission well why did you reach the magnitude beer before I have that understanding that and try to let the deal with the fact that you know we got a good money we’ve got to have more public commitment to it you know there is a ton of money out there to test the soil right comparable there are programs out there to help folks test the soil there are programs that are the public desire and an economic benefit to test me clean up soil and bring a free brownfields back into economic production there is not a whole lot of public commitment to testing the environmental catastrophes there’s not a lot you have to really do that especially the funny the data that you need like your question format what kind of sample did you get right that’s your funders aren’t interested right where have the right way of building that over time not a difficult you have difficult time making that argument to get that kind of research funded and so there is a role as advocacy for or a place where communities can help you get that resources to the table if you start building that relationship they can start they’ll surprise you to dip and start advocating for that kind of money to come in to do this kind of research you know we’ve got we had it for lead for a while right we had wat bride we still have a lot of states kids are

tested for web the part of it part of your normal pediatric checkup but that’s it really we don’t have much more than that and let as a huge is just a huge problem everywhere and not just for a little guys they don’t hit that will do that well the iso capture is lost now that you didn’t say that we didn’t we’re not going to do that because funding local health department they’re not they and so they’ll screen them with the pediatrician report something then the health the health department will have that record in there somewhere and so you can find out if your kids cream pie in there that boy but so that with some of the you know so wrangling figuring out those helping researchers figure out where where the the barriers to getting their work done have been and what kind of help them get around those and has is part of the work that we do and the other day so the other piece of this that Matt matches with the legal people is illegal with the legal story of here right so if it’s want to have the blood tested to make sure they’re healthier to figure out what to do if they need to go to the doctor or something you can do about it you should always have I was really happy here that they’re from that guess it’s mostly the clinical side an intent to reach in written into your projects or not so figuring out whether or not you’re going to be following up with folks or not if you find something bad how you’re going to have that power however if you’re not providing the treatment do you have a way of a girl that’s concrete for those folks a little bit easier now that we have a different a little bit more broads better healthcare system it’s harder to really do that when but a lot of fix did not have health insurance or access to any kind of primary care physician and so so I wanted to look I’ll finish the legal part of this is that the folks there if X really want to know whether or not they can get remedy they wanted out they can do their body six but they also want to know can I go after the flexi-box wrong can I can I see the responsible parties is there an opportunity for class action and so when you’ve got a population that is have been systematically terribly then over on when you’ve got uneven distribution of environmental harm that they’ve experienced they’re gonna have a lot of folks wanting to know what who can I hold responsible for this weird you know unnameable with their family and root and then really they get really and we may be repeated and so they don’t know if they’re holding Matt responsible or if they’re holding if city folks at the table if they’re responsible it’s called works or social of the State Department of Environment Protection responsible who should have actually dealt with the site back in the 80s when they actually contamination headquarters company that poured the pesticide you may have to hold it how can they be held responsible so they have to undertake explaining to them what that legal procedure is is frustrating because there they are absent from the decision-making process they’re absent from the remedy the state’s making all the decisions right now with responsible parties they’re figuring out the cleanup plan they’re figuring out how much money

it’s going to cost they’re going to figure out who’s gonna pay for it they’re going to figure out they’re going to make the decision about how clean that property is going to be made and that will determine what can then go up on the property so if they only clean it to industrial standards guess what those homeowners you’re going to have right next to them again something industrial do they want that or not so my job one of the things I do is try to help them figure out where can they have a voice in this decision well they also have to understand some of the other highly technical pieces of it in order to have that voice and not I work to it it’s such hard work i’m not there in any way shape or form to try to help them do it in a in a way that they are looking to be bigger they don’t because they’re not stupid these folks are really smart they know they can understand so much more credit and it’s about how you communicate with folks to allow them to participate in a real substantial way so that they can help folks get you a better result we could get to a better environmental result if we have their engagement we can help help them figure out how to pressure the right folks to get the higher standard clean up before that site and not have a better result probably economically so it’s figuring out how to make all those things work it is the fun that I get to have its it gets it is it is a lot of fun and it can be a lot it can be very frustrating as well and it’s and I see it as a long-term process a long-term investment a long-term partnership that comes and goes i mean it’s not you know matt night what we’ve seen each other maybe three times over the last year baby yeah but I feel like we’ve been able to in those times in the way we’ve been working together we’ve been able to fit we’ve been able to figure out opportunities to help them for helping each other out or figure out where that where those next steps are and you know you know you just you start building those things so this repository is something that’s going to be really important perfect to continue to build on them find out about that you know it’s about that the community knows about that then we can start helping build a better research project and better results but also get better results for the community and and sort of kick some of the relationships with the Avelle that have been damaged over the years right um so that’s that’s one one thing I want us I didn’t want to say I don’t know what kind of I want to say that you know coming in here today had been you know it was a little scary but i also got crab myself cuz i understood a lot of what was going on but i also think that the work that you’re doing is so incredibly important and and the audience’s that you bring your word research to they need that so individuals need it in order to make better health decisions right they need it in order to decide what their you know we heard mostly about diet and and drug impacts today and jennette and having disentangling all of those things right I got that right okay and and so I was really also very hurt and excited to hear that taking that kind of information can actually you can learning learning from how the liver functions work in that way can be used to understand the other environmental toxic processes as well and so that you’re not starting from Ground Zero on on all of that and so I can’t stay for the afternoon which I think you’re going to be talking about a lot more in that regard but that is really important people this piece population to have been disenfranchised in this area they are constantly blamed for their for their commission you know they’re bad diet right it’s that’s what it is it’s their bad diet they smoke too much you know they don’t know any better they’re educated I don’t know how to eat right right this is constantly this is this is what’s being thrown at them all the time and so they’re constantly feeling like it that nobody’s taking responsibility for the other things that are that are causing is profitable yeah bad dose is a problem right and no exercise is about all the things are true but these other things that Co commitment and the other kinds of environmental impacts that that interact with these things it’s really important for them to understand how that that there that there are folks doing this work out there because they don’t they don’t see it the public doesn’t think that there are folks that are out there doing this they don’t think that and they know

the death of information that can find that smoking gun for drawing that link from environmental pollution to human health outcomes and so I’m really excited about their liver research so I really want to help you guys I want you all to think through how you communicate this in ways that are useful to a variety of audiences not just the community members that policymakers I did hear somebody saying I don’t want to get political in here but you know you’re working for heart you know you’re the folks you’re working pharmaceutical companies you know they want to do well with a drug they want the drugs to work right well there is a lot of other place that’s that’s political inner of itself right so it’s not about be not getting political or not getting political in the end it’s about being able to communicate your research to the folks who really want it to be able to make better decision so I’m thrilled I was you know all you guys for word wrap up so were you able to provide a quick consultation two people in the audience and might have a particular question even if they’re outside of Louisville or Kentucky maybe a region oh absolutely anybody can get in touch with us about our and they’ve got a great great website probably the best website at the university was it Cee Cee p.m. mm-hmm