July 08, 2016

Gillibrand Holds Roundtable Discussion With Residents From Hoosick Falls And Petersburgh Communities To Hear How PFOA Contamination Has Personally Impacted Their Lives

At Senator Gillibrand’s request, federal officials from EPA, CDC and NIH attended public meeting Hoosick Falls Central School District Superintendent Kenneth Facin joined Senator Gillibrand

Hoosick Falls, NY – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today held a roundtable discussion hosted by Hoosick Falls Central School District Superintendent Kenneth Facin to hear from residents of the Hoosick Falls, Hoosick and Petersburgh communities about how perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) contamination has personally impacted their lives.

“No mother should have to go to bed worrying about what her child’s PFOA levels mean for their future. I will take all of the stories told at this discussion today back to Washington to continue fighting for whatever resources and funding are needed to clean up our water and help families recover,” said Senator Gillibrand. “Everyone deserves to know what happened, when it happened and why, so that we can solve this problem effectively and make sure it never happens again. We also need to hold hearings at both the state and federal level, so that we have as many people as possible paying attention to this crisis. In the State of New York, in the year 2016, we should be able to drink our water without having to worry about whether it’s safe. Anything less than that standard is unacceptable. I urge everyone in the Hoosick Falls, Hoosick and Petersburgh communities to keep speaking out about the water crisis. We can’t stop this fight until our water is safe to drink.”

Last month, Senator Gillibrand called on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to use the new authority provided by the recently reformed Toxic Substances Control Act to determine if PFOA should be restricted or banned at the federal level. In May 2016, Senator Gillibrand urged EPA to expedite the clean-up of Hoosick Falls, by designating it as a federal Superfund site. Senator Gillibrand also sent a letter to Senator James Inhofe, Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, in February 2016 requesting that the committee hold a hearing to examine the effects of PFOA on drinking water in the United States. In June 2016, Senator Gillibrand asked the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to do all they can to provide information and assistance to the residents of Hoosick Falls, Hoosick and Petersburgh, regarding the health effects of PFOA exposure.

Yesterday, Senator Gillibrand wrote to the Directors of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences at NIH and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry at CDC urging the agencies to prioritize research into the health effects of PFOA exposure and asking the agencies to outline the resources and legislative authority they need to conduct and support research to fill in the current gaps in our understanding of the health effects of PFOA.