----- Original Message -----From: Sherry SwineyTo: Wingsong1@aol.com ; PATRICK Crusade
Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 6:20 AM
Subject: [patrickcrusade] Update - Contaminated Water/ USA Prisoners
Please excuse any cross-posts... Here are two messages regarding the contaminated water situation in our Prisons. There's also a petition to sign and phone numbers to call. Obviously, a lot of pressure is needed to get this situation resolved. Blessings,
www.patrickcrusade.org----- Original Message -----
Subject: staff protected not prisoners
I don't know if you want to pass this on but I just received a call from a prisoner at California State Prison - Soledad who learned from a staff member that staff is being told to bring their own water as the men are still given tap water --- he told me that and we were suddenly cut off -- makes ya wonder, don't it?
----- Original Message -----From: KayLeeTo:MTWT
Sent: Monday, August 09, 2004 1:00 AM
Subject: Contaminated Water for Prisoners Everybody's Problem
Don't you think it a national shame when a nation that insists on incarcerating so many of its citizens can't even furnish their most basic needs? I am utterly appalled... I wish we'd do something different for once, something right, something honorable for a change... Maybe we all need to walk a mile in the shoes of the least among us, for it is by our neglect that we have allowed bad laws and overcrowded prisons to expand punishment to include years of exposure to sickness and disease and substandard medical care - in my eyes, that is without doubt cruel and unusual - and totally unwise. We all really should support prison reform because when all these diseased people reenter society, many of us will be walking in their shoes - or at least paying for the neglect of the system. This Texas prison has Atrazine in its water. Atrazine is an herbacide that is considered a public health risk. I've included the petition and an explanation of what Atrazine is and what to do if you suspect tainted water. Please sign for clean drinking water for human beings.
Petition Against Contaminated Water for prisoners, Hobby Unit Texas
Hobby Unit, Texas is an all female prison with a long documented history of contaminated water. In summer heat of 120 degree temps easily reached ...and nothing to drink but contaminated water, these women are in a life threatening situation. http://www.petitiononline.com/badwater/petition.html
To: TDCJ, Warden Karen Brown, medical staff at Hobby Unit, Tx., Mayor and Board Of Health Marlin Tx., The American Red Cross, and all others in authority to fix this emergency problemConcerning the Hobby Unit, women's facility in Texas. The problem with water contamination is an ongoing problem. The EPA report of August 5, 2004, based on the data extracted July 17, 2004. shows that the water being used for showering, cooking, and drinking, is contaminated and has been tested positive with the contaminate Atrazine. There are no purification methods being sought for these women inmates.
Potential short term health effects for Atrazine that the EPA has found when people are exposed to it for short periods of time are: congestion of heart, lungs and kidneys, low blood pressure, muscle spasms, weight loss, damage to adrenal glands.
Long -term Atrazine has the potential to cause the following effects from a lifetime exposure at levels above the MCL: weight loss, cardiovascular damage, retinal and some muscle degeneration, and cancer.
Inmates and families of inmates are complaining they are in ill health and suffering from heat exhaustion, only adding to the problem. There is lack of ventilation bringing the temperature to 120 degrees inside the cell block, unsanitary conditions, sleep deprivation, and the contaminated water the inmates are being forced to drink due to fresh bottled water being short in supply, and not available to all inmates.
We the undersigned are appalled by lack of humane treatment, and ongoing medical problems due to this contaminated water. We demand that this matter be investigated, and a suitable solution be made at once. These inmates are human beings and are incarcerated for rehabilitation, and not to be punished or mistreated. We demand bottled water for all inmates, and that the contamination problem be cleaned up, like it would be done anywhere else.We see this as an emergency as inmates are already showing symptoms of Atrazine exposure.
__________________________________________________________________________________________ATRAZINE CONTAMINATION: Below you will find a complaint I filed on behalf of my girlfriend Donna Youngblood, an inmate who is incarcerated at the Hobby Unit. The complaint was filed with Joan Covici of the Dallas ACLU office. The fact sheet below my statement to Ms. Covici gives the facts on Atrazine, the contaminant in the drinking water that the Texas Department of Criminal Justice is supplying the inmates at the Hobby Unit. Tom Hardin
Below is the EPA Factsheet that explains what Atrazine is and the effects of being exposed to it. Donna has complained of headaches, general weakness, dizziness, leg cramps, and she has lost over 19 lbs. over the past two months. She has seen a doctor at the Hobby Unit and was diagnosed with allergies. She was give some sort of allergy medicine, but she still suffers with the same symptoms which are listed below as the effects of being exposed to Atrazine.
Consumer Factsheet on: ATRAZINE
List of Contaminants
As part of the Drinking Water and Health pages, this fact sheet is part of a larger publication: National Primary Drinking Water Regulations
This is a factsheet about a chemical that may be found in some public or private drinking water supplies. It may cause health problems if found in amounts greater than the health standard set by the United States
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
What is Atrazine and how is it used?
Atrazine is a white, crystalline solid organic compound. It is a widely used herbicide for control of broadleaf and grassy weeds. Atrazine was estimated to be the most heavily used herbicide in the United States in 1987/89, with its most extensive use for corn and soybeans in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa,
Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Texas, and Wisconsin. Effective in 1993, its uses were greatly restricted.
The list of trade names given below may help you find out whether you are using this chemical at home or work.
Trade Names and Synonyms:
Why is Atrazine being Regulated?
In 1974, Congress passed the Safe Drinking Water Act. This law requires EPA to determine safe levels of chemicals in drinking water which do or may cause health problems. These non-enforceable levels, based solely on possible health risks and exposure, are called Maximum Contaminant Level Goals.
The MCLG for atrazine has been set at 3 parts per billion (ppb) because EPA believes this level of protection would not cause any of the health effects described below.
Based on this MCLG, EPA has set an enforceable standard called a Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL). MCLs are set as close to the MCLGs as possible, considering the ability of public water systems to detect and remove contaminants using suitable treatment technologies.
The MCL has been set at 3 ppb because EPA believes, given present technology and resources, this is the lowest level to which water systems can reasonably be required to remove this contaminant should it occur in
These drinking water standards and the regulations for ensuring these standards are met, are called National Primary Drinking Water Regulations. All public water supplies must abide by these regulations.
What are the Health Effects?
Short-term: EPA has found atrazine to potentially cause the following health effects when people are exposed to it at levels above the MCL for relatively short periods of time: congestion of heart, lungs and kidneys; low blood pressure; muscle spasms; weight loss; damage to adrenal glands.
Long-term: Atrazine has the potential to cause the following effects from a lifetime exposure at levels above the MCL: weight loss, cardiovascular damage, retinal and some muscle degeneration; cancer.
How much Atrazine is produced and released to the environment?
Atrazine may be released to the environment in wastewater from manufacturing facilities and through its use as a herbicide. Atrazine was the second most frequently detected pesticide in EPA's National Survey of Pesticides in Drinking Water Wells. EPA's Pesticides in Ground Water Database indicates numerous detections of atrazine at concentrations above the MCL in ground water in several States, including Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and New York.
What happens to Atrazine when it is released to the environment?
Microbial activity and other chemicals may breakdown atrazine in soil and water, particularly in alkaline conditions. Sunlight and evaporation do not reduce its presence. It may bind to some soils, but generally tends to leach to ground water.
Atrazine is not likely to be taken up in the tissues of plants or animals.
How will Atrazine be Detected in and Removed from My Drinking Water?
The regulation for atrazine became effective in 1992. Between 1993 and 1995, EPA required your water supplier to collect water samples every 3 months for one year and analyze them to find out if atrazine is present above 1 ppb. If it is present above this level the system must continue to monitor this
If contaminant levels are found to be consistently above the MCL, your water supplier must take steps to reduce the amount of atrazine so that it is consistently below that level. The following treatment methods have been approved by EPA for removing atrazine: Granular activated charcoal.
How will I know if Atrazine is in my drinking water?
If the levels of atrazine exceed the MCL, 3 ppb, the system must notify the public via newspapers, radio, TV and other means. Additional actions, such as providing alternative drinking water supplies, may be required to prevent serious risks to public health.
Drinking Water Standards:
Mclg: 3 ppb
Mcl: 3 ppb
Learn more about your drinking water!
EPA strongly encourages people to learn more about their drinking water, and to support local efforts to protect and upgrade the supply of safe drinking water. Your water bill or telephone book's government listings are a good starting point.
Your local water supplier can give you a list of the chemicals they test for in your water, as well as how your water is treated.
Your state Department of Health/Environment is also a valuable source of information.
Please be advised that the numbers below are totally worthless. They will tell you that the Atrazine contamination in the water the inmates at Hobby Hell are forced to have to drink is a Texas problem, and that the EPA has no jurisdiction in the matter. >>Note added by Tom Hardin, Iron Cage Discussion Group.
For help in locating these agencies or for information on drinking water in general, call: EPA's Safe Drinking Water Hotline: (800) 426-4791. For additional information on the uses and releases of chemicals in your
state, contact the: Community Right-to-Know Hotline: (800) 424-9346 List of Contaminants
----- Original Message -----From: Wingsong1@aol.comTo: email@example.com
Sent: Monday, August 09, 2004 1:09 PM
Subject: Contaminated Water/ Texas Prisoners
Please take a moment to read and sign the petition below. Hobby Unit, Texas is an all female prison with a long documented history of contaminated water being given to the prisoners. In summer heat of 120 degree temps easily reached ...this is life threatening situation between the heat and contaminated watersupplies for these women.
Additional information on situtations at Hobby Unit, Marlin Texas can befound at:
PrisonActivists.com, Forums, "Emergency Situations" http://www.prisonactivists.com/forums/index.php?PHPSESSID=0aafc16129f19fc1738a5bd1ce14fdbb&action=register and
The Iron Cage Website: