Toxic Homes: A California Wasteland
Working Latino communities across California have been subject to environmental conditions that are less than stellar. In fact, cities like Kettleman City and Wildomar are harmfully exposed and degraded by toxic waste management companies. The detrimental effects of this environmental racism are numerous—they effect the health of the workers, their families, and the communities at large in these underserved constituencies.
Kettleman City is a rural, majority-Latino and framework community that is home to the largest hazardous waste dump this side of the mIssissippi. They have shockingly high rates of childhood cancer, birth defects, and miscarriages. With the size of the dump looking to double, Brave New Films took on the Department of Toxic Substances Control to stop the expansion through online/social media, on-the-ground actions, and a video campaign to prevent its growth.
The small-town community of Autumnwood in Wildomar, CA is yet another community that has seen the decline of its members’ health because of contaminated soil and water from nearby plants. Autumnwood residents suffered not only poor health as many became ill, but the community spirit becomes hardened as well. We teamed up with the Center on Race, Poverty, and the Environment along with the Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice to educate large public audiences on the issue that many do not know about. We wanted to lift the voices of Californians and help share their story so that change can take place.