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EPA Grant to Help St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Reduce Asthma Attacks

Release Date: 09/11/2013
Contact Information: John Martin, (212) 637-3662, martin.johnj@epa.gov

      (New York, N.Y.) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $30,000 to the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe to help fund an outreach program that will educate the tribal community on ways to reduce exposure to substances in the indoor environment that can trigger asthma attacks. The grant was awarded under the EPA’s Environmental Justice Small Grants Program, which supports and empowers communities working on solutions to local environmental and public health issues.

      Asthma is a serious, sometimes life-threatening respiratory disease that affects almost 25 million Americans, including an estimated seven million children. Although there is no cure for asthma yet, it can be controlled through medical treatment and by reducing exposure to asthma triggers. Asthma is a leading cause of hospitalization among children and school absences.

      “EPA environmental justice grants provide much needed funds to tackle local pollution problems and improve the quality of life in communities," said Judith A. Enck, EPA Regional Administrator. "Educating families within the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe about asthma triggers will keep children healthy and out of the hospital.”

      The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Air Quality Program will use this EPA environmental justice grant to implement a clean air intervention project that will educate the Akwesasne tribal community to reduce exposure to indoor asthma triggers. An indoor air quality expert will conduct an air quality audit of each home and help participants implement strategies to reduce exposures to toxins including radon, mold, household chemicals and second-hand smoke. Participants will receive continued monitoring to evaluate the impact of these strategies as well as follow-up visits to assess the program’s success, answer questions and provide support in making changes that promote healthy indoor air.

      Since 1994, the EPA’s environmental justice small grants program has supported projects to address environmental justice issues in more than 1,300 communities. The grants represent EPA’s continued commitment to expand the conversation on environmentalism and advance environmental justice in communities across the nation.

      2013 EJ Small Grant recipients and project descriptions: http://www.epa.gov/environmentaljustice/resources/publications/grants/ej-smgrants-recipients-2013.pdf.

      More information about EPA’s Environmental Justice Small Grants program: http://www.epa.gov/environmentaljustice/grants/ej-smgrants.html.

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