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Our Kids’ Health
How Do We Protect Our Children’s Environmental Health?
Children are vulnerable members of our society, and are more susceptible to the effects of toxic environmental exposures.
The fetus and young children are physiologically different from adults. Their organ systems are developing at a rapid rate. Children breathe in more air and take in more food per pound of body weight than adults. Children have higher metabolic rates and absorption capacity in their guts. In addition, children have behaviors, such as pica (hand to mouth activity), that increase exposures to toxins. These factors lead to increased susceptibility to environmentally-related disorders.
In recent decades, rates of childhood cancers, asthma, and neurological disorders have increased substantially, and scientific evidence indicates that environmental exposures contribute to the incidence of these diseases.
The 2005 Out of Harm’s Way conference led to the formation of the Michigan Network for Children’s Environmental Health (MNCEH). The Ecology Center is the lead organization in this Network and a founding member. The MNCEH is a coalition of health professionals, health-affected groups, environmental organizations, and others dedicated to a safe and less toxic world for Michigan's children. Through education, outreach, and advocacy, we seek to protect Michigan's children from adverse impacts caused by exposure to widespread hazardous chemicals.