Nasty Toxins in Childcare Settings

Where do you kids spend the majority of their time?  Probably in schools and childcare centers. While many schools have made considerable progress in the areas of environmental health, there is still a long way to go. We’ve made great strides in schools– more are using green cleaners (Vermont has a new law about this!), limiting pesticides and car idling, improving ventilation.

But childcare centers are even less regulated. Because the settings vary so widely, it is hard to understand the environmental health challenges that currently exist, and to provide guidelines.

Until now.

Research has shown us that babies and toddlers are exposed to more indoor pollutants and more sensitive to them. In this time of rapid development, children are susceptible to the many toxins in regular childcare settings.

A new article in Environmental Health Perspectives notes this challenge within the childcare system:

“Yet environmental health standards in child care settings nationwide—which can include not just centers but also private homes, workplaces, universities, and places of worship—still lag behind those of schools, where children are older, larger, and somewhat less susceptible to environmental exposures. Unlike with more uniformly regulated schools, child care licensing, permitting, and oversight occur on a variety of levels, resulting in a fractured regulatory landscape.”

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