The SPLU Sustainability Office was recently asked to post this personal statement from a community leader on their thoughts of I522. If you would liek to know more, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
These words already resonate with you on a soul level. I started my own journey as an organic gardener, mentor, and activist after experiencing chemical poisoning from Home Garden products as an adult and witnessing animals die on a Wheat Farm in Eastern, WA due to overspraying, when I was young. I became fully activated with WTC when I had my newborn son and learned that pesticides were in breast milk. As I volunteered and trained with Seattle Tilth I realized that organic food/sustainable issues were not just about taste preference but a bottom line concern about the health and safety of our food our planet and our children, children especially are vulnerable to the effects of chemicals and pesticides.
This fall, Washington voters will have the opportunity to make our state the first in the nation to require the labeling of genetically engineered foods when they vote on I-522. I-522 is about creating transparency for food shoppers and the industry responsible for the creation of these GE foods, an industry led by chemical giants such as Monsanto, DuPont Pioneer, Dow Agrosciences, and Bayer CropScience. Many of the seeds that these corporations sell to farmers produce crops that are resistant to herbicides and pesticides, allowing farmers to spray large amounts of these chemicals on their crops without killing them.
These chemicals, which are produced and sold by these same companies, have many unintended environmental consequences, from the creation of chemical-resistant “superweeds” to the damage to biodiversity in our ecosystems. These companies know that their profit margins depend on the public remaining in the dark when it comes to genetically modified crops, which is why they’re pouring millions of dollars into the campaign to defeat I-522.