NASW-NJ LEGISLATIVE AGENDA:
Social workers have a special concern for and ethical responsibility to oppressed populations who suffer disproportionately with dangerous environmental conditions. The environmental crisis includes global warming, unplanned land use, escalating use of nonrenewable natural resources, rapid extinction of whole species of plants and animals, and an increasingly scarce and contaminated water supply.
NASW-NJ advocates for:
- Legislation that incorporates the precautionary principle;
- Equitable access to clean water for all people;
- Preventing or decreasing the risk of illnesses and disabilities resulting from environmental degradation and pollution, especially for vulnerable populations;
- Appropriate disaster planning, infrastructure planning, and adequate funding and services for disaster relief;
- The reduction of children’s exposure to pesticides and other chemicals through approaches such as the precautionary principle and integrated pest management;
- Adequate funding of state and local agencies and local counterparts to have the necessary resources and authority to establish and enforce environmental protection in accordance with generally acceptable scientific standards and data; and
- More rigorous and effective testing, regulation, and labeling of chemicals and products that contain them.