McGovern3Yesterday, former presidential candidate and Senator, George McGovern died at the age of 90. McGovern will be remembered for his compassionate values and his fight for a better quality of life for everyone.


In the midst of our current contentious election we've lost this great leader who gave his life to social justice and human rights and who said on many occasions: “I will go to my grave believing that the country would have been better off if I had been elected instead of Richard Nixon.”  It was not an immodest statement – merely factual for anyone who then lived through the continuation of the Vietnam War, the Watergate scandal and assaults on civil rights.   


I volunteered for the McGovern presidential campaign that year in 1972. By the time I returned home from precinct walking and poll watching on election night, it was all over. McGovern had only won in Massachusetts and the District of Columbia. It was considered the worst presidential election loss in history.  But, despite the loss, an entire generation of activists was inspired to keep working for justice. This was my first time to be highly involved in a political campaign, starting my future fighting for healthy communities. 


Today we have a new generation of activists working to elect leaders, who share McGovern’s passion for justice for all people. Our current generation of young people, families, moms, dads, are all continuing to fight for some of the same things that were fought for in the 70s, 80s and 90s. Summarizing his views on many issues in his 2011 book, the last of twelve written, he said, “Be compassionate. Put government to work to help the less fortunate. End hunger. Spend more for education. Protect the environment.”


Let’s show our compassion for our neighbors and communities and work hard until November 6 on today’s campaign, 40 years after McGovern’s devastating loss. We cannot look back on this election as a lost opportunity – let’s recommit ourselves in these last days to elect candidates who will carry on his legacy.


Si se puede!

i voted stickerDid you know that the last day to register to vote is October 22? Or, that you don’t have to have an I.D. in order to cast your vote?

It’s very important that you know your voting rights before you go to the polls on November 6, because unfortunately, not everyone is aware of them.

It’s been said before, but this election is one of the most important in our history as a community and an environmental justice organization. EHC would like you to go to the polls feeling excited that you’re doing your part as a citizen – and comfortable knowing the rights you have as a voter. EHC is working hard to make sure that everyone who can vote does vote, because our communities are key to supporting environmental justice in San Diego.

For instance, you may not know what to do if you show up to your polling place and find that you’re not on the voter list. What are your options?

  • First, ask the poll worker to check again. There are a lot of names on that list, so a quick double check is always helpful.
  • Secondly, call the voter registrar to make sure that this is the correct polling location for you. This just takes a few minutes by calling 1-800-345-VOTE (8683).
  • Finally, ask for a “provisional” ballot. This allows you to vote at any location, so long as you’re a registered voter.

Additionally, here are a few key dates you should know about before the election:

  • October 22, 2012 at midnight is the last opportunity to register to vote in the November 6 election. If you haven’t registered or don’t know if you’re registered, you can do this online at
  • October 30, 2012 is the last day to request a vote-by-mail ballot, which allows you to send in your ballot through mail, if you’d rather not go to the polls.
  • November 6, 2012 is election day. The polls are open from 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. You can find your polling place at

Check out the ACLU of San Diego’s Voter Rights Guide to follow simple instructions to help you make a difference on November 6 or download the Voter Rights Postcard.

For more in-depth information, visit the ACLU of California’s Voter Rights page.

As part of our Healthy Kids Campaign, EHC won passage of the first state law to ban the sale of lead-contaminated candies which significantly threaten children's health. The lead-free candy law went into effect in 2005.

Unfortunately, the threat of lead in candy still exists in California.

Red Vines Lead Candy

The CDPH sent a warning out last month telling parents and families that makers of Red Vines® Black Licorice  Twists, Family Mix, Mixed Bites and Snaps containing black licorice had lead levels exceeding California standards. The products have been recalled.

EHC asks you to be careful and discard any candy that is on the list below:

• Black Licorice Bar, 2.5 oz.
• Jumbo Black Licorice Hanging Bag, 8 oz.
• Black Licorice Tray, 5 oz.
• Black Licorice Laydown Bag, 7 oz.
• Black Licorice Laydown Bag, 16 oz.
• Black Licorice Jar, 4 lbs.
• Mixed Bites Hanging Bag, 8 oz.
• Mixed Bites Bag, 16 oz.
• Family Mix Laydown Bag, 24 oz.
• Family Mix Laydown Bag, 32 oz.
• Snaps Hanging Bag, 5.5 oz.
• Snaps Theater Box, 4.5 oz.
• Snaps Tin, 12 oz.

Remember to pay attention when buying any products for your children and families and look for EHC updates and information that will help keep you safe from lead poisoning.

You can help EHC with its efforts to continue working on making neighborhoods healthy and lead-free by donating here.



EHC and the San Diego Housing Commission offer free blood-lead testing to help ensure your children are safe from lead poisoning and to let you know if you may have lead in your home.

Exposure to lead-based paint can be harmful to your children. Depending on the age of your home, you may have lead in and around it without even knowing it.

If there is lead in your home, your children may be at risk of breathing or ingesting dust as lead-based paint comes off of your interior and exterior walls, doors and windows.

Our free blood-lead tests are easy and non-invasive and provide results within minutes. If your child tests positive for lead, we’ll refer you to further medical evaluation.

At the event, we’ll have helpful information on how to eliminate lead from your home, including offering fee home inspections and other resources.

Free blood lead testing will be offered on Thursday October 25, 2012 from noon – 4 p.m. at the Neighborhood House Association, 841 41st Street, San Diego, CA 92113. Download our flier with this information. (en español)

EHC is committed to protecting our communities from harmful pollutants like lead. Our efforts in the past include passing a City of San Diego lead ordinance in 2009. We are working to improve the City’s lead ordinance to protect more homes and more families from lead poisoning. Learn more about improving the City’s lead ordinance here.

On September 1st, Environmental Health Coalition, Colectivo Chilpancingo and RECIMEC met at the Arroyo Alamar with musicians from Tijuana and San Diego for a Fandango in favor of the "Alamar Sustentable" campaign.
The event was attended by nearby residents of the Colonia 10 de Mayo, Colonia Chilpancingo and Campestre Murua.
Those in attendance left the event very interested in the work the organizations are doing and recommended that a second event be held in the coming months.


Fandango dancing            



Fandango festival




fandango music