Strategic Partnerships for Change in an Environmental Justice Community: The ENRRICH Study
Abstract

Abstract:

Background: San Bernardino, California, is home to the San Bernardino Railyard (SBR), a major commerce hub with high associated air-pollution, identified as an environmental justice (EJ) issue by local community and air quality agencies. Alarmingly, one elementary school is located only a few hundred yards from SBR.

Methods: The school, university researchers, and a local community-based organization (CBO) established a partnership to assess potential adverse health impacts in the children and develop interventions and mitigation plans.

Results: Study results comparing target school with a demographically matched school verified community concerns finding significantly poorer respiratory health in children attending school near the railyard. Partners are working with local and state collaboratives, the school board, and funding agencies to address the resulting needs of children through education, mitigation, and prevention in an environment where necessary systems changes involving the railyard are elusive.

Conclusions: This paper shares lessons learned in moving toward change when addressing an EJ community’s health challenges.