By Don Corrigan
Fear. Anxiety. Heartbreak. Those are words used by residents living near the radioactive West lake Landfill in North St. Louis County. Residents say their fear, their anxiety and their heartbreaks have multiplied in the 2020 pandemic because of weakened immune systems.
The COVID-19 virus can cause severe illness and death, especially for those with compromised immune systems. Many residents living in the vicinity of West Lake report that they already suffer ailments that they attribute to the nearby toxic landfill.
“The amount of fear and anxiety our community members have been forced to live with in regards to the landfill and toxins has doubled with COVID-19,” said Dawn Chapman, co-founder of Just Moms STL, an activist group that has fought for years for cleanup of the site. “Many of our residents are taking more extreme precautions in order to avoid this COVID-19 illness.
“If there is any good news, it is that we have learned to rely heavily on each other for support and other resources, while we have fought for a clean up at our site,” said Chapman. “Our community connections and relationships have really helped us during this viral pandemic. We are continuing to support and look after each other.”
November 28, 2020 in Environment, Home
Tagged Bridgeton, Cold Water Creek, COVID, COVID-19, Dawn Chapman, Karen Nickel, radio active waste, Toxic Waste, West Lake Landfill
Pictured above: Dawn Chapman (Left) and Karen Nickel, co-founders of Just Moms STL. Picture provided by Just Moms STL.
Don Corrigan interviews Dawn Chapman and Karen Nickel, co-founders of Just Moms STL, in this edition of “Behind The Editor’s Curtain.” The duo shares their insight, research, perspectives, updates, and history about the issues surrounding the West Lake Landfill and their struggle to protect their kids, their family, and their community.
“The hardest thing is not getting people to action, but getting people not to lose hope,” Just Moms STL said. “The bureaucracy in this issue is huge and it’s so disgusting that people lose heart and say that nobody is going to come in and save us.”
November 5, 2015 in Environment, Home, Podcasts
Tagged Bridgeston Landfill, Bridgeston Landfill fire, Bridgeston Landfill radio active waste, Coldwater Creek, Just Moms STL, radio active waste, St. Louis Radio Active Waste, West Lake Landfill, West Lake Landfill Fire
Don Corrigan’s new article in the Gateway Journalism Review has hit the newsstand!
A podcast featuring Dawn Chapman and Karen Nickel, the founders of Just Moms STL, will be posted on Environmental Echo soon – be sure to check back for this exciting interview by Don Corrigan.
Corrigan’s article is entitled, “Media Cover — And Uncover — Environmental Problems in St. Louis.” The article takes a close look at news media coverage of the dangers of radioactive waste at the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton, Missouri, west of Lambert International Airport for St. Louis.
Corrigan spent time with Just Moms STL as part of his study and the community group’s interactions with the news media. Corrigan found that national coverage of the contaminated site has often exceeded the amount of local media attention to what some scientists view as a potential radioactive threat to a large area of the St. Louis region.
To read the article CLICK HERE.