The Mothers of East Los Angeles at Santa Isabel would like to express their gratitude to the California community for its support against the Vernon toxic waste incinerator. On May 24, The Times reported that Security Environmental Systems abandoned its project to build our state's first such incinerator.
This victory would not have been possible without the support of Assemblywomen Lucille Roybal-Allard, state Sen. Art Torres and U.S. Rep. Edward Roybal. Through their efforts, environmental groups such as Greenpeace and community groups from environmentally threatened cities such as Santa Maria, Casmalia, Kettleman City, Rosamont and Martinez joined together to halt this unproven technology. Along with community groups from South-Central Los Angeles, this unprecedented coalition united to work for the betterment of California's future.
It is no secret that chemical- and toxin-producing corporations looking to make a fast dollar target communities of color because of their stereotypical powerlessness. Through this victory, let it be known that communities of color throughout the state of California will unite whenever children are threatened.
JUANA BEATRIZ GUTIERREZ, President, Mothers of East Los Angeles