Author Archives: Valentina Stackl

Farmworkers at Higher Risk for Parkinson’s

Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative condition of the central nervous system that causes tremors in the body, difficulty walking, and trouble coordinating movements. In later stages, the disease also causes emotional and cognitive problems such as depression, hallucination, memory loss, … Continue reading

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Poisoning our Children

“Within five minutes, I had noted multiple cleft palates and several children with apparent Down Syndrome…. It was shocking and disturbing to walk into a room with a group of parents and children that easily represented three to four times the national … Continue reading

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GMOs Pose Potential Threat to Farmworkers

GMOs have been shown to increase use of pesticides, which puts the farmworkers who cultivate and harvest the nation’s foods at risk for birth defects, learning disabilities, cancers, and even death. More than one billion pounds of pesticides are used … Continue reading

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National Latino AIDS Awareness Day

Today marks the last day of a month of activities in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, which began on September 15. The end of this celebration is capped off by National Latino AIDS Awareness Day (NLAAD). This year’s theme is … Continue reading

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Boy, Interrupted

Many people know that being exposed to pesticides can have a negative effect on their health and, this is especially true for expectant mothers. Doctors often warn pregnant women against using or being exposed to certain chemicals, but until now … Continue reading

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Michigan Farmworkers Deal With Loss of Harvest

An estimated 90,700 migrant and seasonal farmworkers and their dependents live in my home state of Michigan. This includes farmworkers who live in Michigan year-round and those who travel from southern states, such as Texas and Florida, as they migrate … Continue reading

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A Quiet Spring

In June, 50 years ago, the modern environmentalist movement was born. The seminal bestseller Silent Spring by Rachel Carson was published in June 1962 as segments in New Yorker Magazine. In September of that year, the book was published and, … Continue reading

The ABCs of Health Literacy

Most of us know what literacy means: it’s someone’s ability to read, write, and understand. Health literacy, or the capability to read, understand, and use healthcare information to make decisions is often less clear. Even if health literacy might be … Continue reading

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National Heat Stress Awareness Week

The National Safety Council’s 2009 edition of Injury Facts ranked agriculture as our nation’s most dangerous industry with 28.6 deaths per 100,000 adult workers. Agricultural workers have a heat-related death rate 20 times greater than the general American workforce, according … Continue reading

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Increased Risk of Cancers among Farmworkers

In honor of National Farmworker Awareness Week, I thought it prudent to examine one particularly significant health issue plaguing the farmworker community: Cancer. A variety of cancers have been associated with work in agriculture for decades. Prostate cancer, for example, … Continue reading

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