electric competition
pollution prevention

Weekly vigil for students at River Valley Schools


Riffe Center
77 South High Street
Thursdays, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm

River Valley Middle and High School students in Marion are attending school on grounds contaminated with deadly toxic chemicals. Governor Bob Taft must do something immediately.

These schools were built on a site where the U.S. Army Marion Engineer Depot, the largest facility of its kind in the nation, dumped, burned and buried solvents, paints, fuel oil, and chemical agents for nearly two decades.

Seventy different chemicals have been found on or near the school campus, including arsenic, vinyl chloride, trichloroethylene, benzo(a)pyrene, chromium, lead, PCBs, and solvents. In 1999, the U.S. Army found 'an imminent threat to human health' on Army Reserve property near the schools.

The Ohio Department of Health has confirmed a much-higher-than-expected rate of leukemia among River Valley graduates. The rate for esophageal cancer is ten times greater. Between 1966 and 1995, death rates from leukemia increased by 122% in the city of Marion and brain cancer death rates increased by 40% in Marion County.

If a tornado roared through Marion and destroyed the River Valley Middle and High Schools, the state government would show up within hours to find a safe place for the children to learn. The River Valley Schools are just as uninhabitable and the state government has spent years dragging its feet.

For more information: Noreen Warnock or Simona Vaclavikova, Ohio Citizen Action, (614) 263-4111.