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Citizen Forum

What are your fellow citizens concerns?  The opinions & comments expressed below are not necessarily those of TRW members.  If you would like to submit a comment to the FORUM , email them to forum@trwnews.net    Comments should be brief and to the point on the forum page.  All postings on the FORUM page will remain anonymous.  If you have a lot to say and want your name associated with your article, we will post them in the EDITORIAL page of this site. Send editorials to editorial@trwnews.net    PLEASE do not send your comments in attachments to your email (because of the threat of viruses, we will not open them).  Thanks for your understanding.
 
Current Forum comment topics include:  
          Health  Real Estate  Legal/Punitive Actions  State Agencies  Political  Dow Chemical  Miscellaneous   

Another Voice

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I just want to commend you all for the diligence and hard work put forth in trying to resolve this issue. Dow makes me sick how they give an impression of helping any in the international community, yet poison, and show lack of regard for those in their immediate community. This PR stunt literally makes me sick. I used to work for Dow but left the company early in my career, partly because I was sick as to how this company operates as to issues like this. I liked working for the company and really thought they would live up to their responsibilities. I guess Dow is just like any corporation that puts their bottom line over the health and safety of individuals in their community. Thank you again for all your hard work on this matter. If you need another voice, please let me know.

EPA Dioxin Committee

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Not a surprise that the EPA filled the Community group with people having ties to Dow Chemical. EPA will justify it because they can’t fix it. Dow will control the EPA just like they did the last two governors. Those living on contaminated property were tossed aside long ago as was the Bay and the people living by the dredging dump on the Saginaw River.

Support Our Troops

bulletHELLO MY NAME IS SPC-AVERILL DAVID D. I AM A RESIDENT OF FREELAND AND LOVE THE COMMUNITY. CURRENTLY I AM DEPLOYED WITH F.CO.425TH INF. (ABN)(LRS) FIGHTING THE WAR ON TERROR IN TAL AFAR IRAQ. I WOULD LIKE TO WISH A MERRY CHRISTMAS TO THE FREELAND COMMUNITY AND ESPECIALLY ALL OF THE GREAT PEOPLE AT PAT'S FOOD CENTER. I SHOULD BE ARRIVING BACK IN FREELAND SOME TIME IN THE MIDDLE OF FEBRUARY. MY E-MAIL ADDRESS IS david.averill@us.army.mil if anyone wishes to say hello. GOD BLESS YOU FREELAND AND GOD BLESS AMERICA. AN AMERICAN SOLDIER SERVING PROUDLY, SPC-AVERILL, DAVID D.

Health

bullet I lived in the Saginaw bay area for most of my life.   I currently live in Louisville, KY.
My comment is this: I moved away from the Saginaw are 14 years ago. While i was living up there I had repeated breathing problems, headaches all the time and developed some unusual digestive problems. The doctors kept telling me it was allergies. I joked around and blamed it on the water. No joke now- I feel a hundred times better than i did when i lived up there. Most of my symptoms are gone, but I wonder what the long term effect will be on me. My father died from cancer and he worked at Dow Corning. I firmly believe that not only Dow Chemical, but also Dow Corning are poisoning the community up there. My sister has been surveyed and is probably going to allow soil samples and blood testing to be done. My family still lives up there and I'm VERY concerned about all of them. Has anybody ever looked at the high rate of non Hodgkin's lymphoma cases among Dow Chemical and Corning workers and the surrounding community. I can name 3 people right now that died from it and all 3 worked for one or the other. One was a 25 year old man just entering the prime of his life. How sad! He never even got to see his baby be born!
Dow needs to be held responsible for everybody's welfare up there!
bulletYou are doing wonderful work. Thank you for keeping us informed and updated on the watershed issues. Working in healthcare, i have seen firsthand the results of so-called "safe" substances only to discover the true results years later. It is a tragedy that each of us must be at risk for the benefit of few. Please keep on with your actions and know that you have support that is beyond your immediate scope of awareness   082503
bulletTRW must keep the citizens of the Tittabawassee flood plain informed on the dangerous dioxins contaminating their property
bulletDow should fund Health insurance for residents afflicted with health problems now known to be caused by dioxin exposure.  Provide same insurance for any current resident who develops dioxin related health issues in the future.
bulletWhat about all of the families that lived in the flood plain and moved elsewhere.   What kind of health problems are they experiencing?
bulletStop Dow from participating in any dioxin related Health Study
bulletEncourage the development of a Health Study which excludes Dow participation except for funding
bulletWho in Saginaw had Tittabawassee River sediment dumped in their yard by landscapers?   Did they use it for a sandbox?  Any unusual illnesses at these residences?
bulletMy thanks to the Lone Tree Council and the Tittabawassee River Watch groups for all of their hard work and commitment to the people of the Saginaw area. 
My son spent his early years living on South Center Road, playing in the back yard, fishing in the creek and playing in the dirt. I always wonder what problems will the exposure to these chemicals  bring to my son in the coming years?  
Again thank you to the dedicated people in the above named groups who do try to make a difference and answer questions for us all.

Real Estate

bulletWhat homes sell for in relation to the asking price is interesting, but if the asking prices are less than they would be without the contamination, then the survey results are essentially meaningless.  They would really need to compare sales prices for comparable properties with dioxin contamination, to those without contamination.   However, that is much more difficult to do, so that is probably why they just looked at asking prices.  But, under Dow's survey, if a property would  normally be worth $150,000, but it was listed and sold for $100,000, they would show that as "proof" that the values aren't being affected since it sold for the asking price.  That is simply not a valid comparison. Jack Smiley (Michigan Real Estate Broker)
bulletRealignment of property taxes to reflect  zero property values until issue resolved.
bulletDow should buy up property in contaminated flood plain and fence it all off.
bulletDo I have to test my property or inform a potential buyer of the contamination?   Saginaw County Department of Public Health says no.  Will they pay may legal fees and other damages if I follow their direction and I am later sued?

Direct quote from the Saginaw County Department of Public Health web site as of 11/3/2002.  Note this web site is out of date and content is heavily influenced by Dow propaganda.

"If you plan to sell your house in the future and any part of your property has been flooded in the past, it will not be necessary to disclose dioxin contamination of your property in accordance with the Sellers Disclosure Act unless you know that your property is contaminated with dioxin as a result of soil sample analysis."

bulletConsider this real estate transaction scenario:  You have just hosted open house and a potential buyer and his family are very interested.  They love the house and the river front property.  The kids are really excited about the back yard and the river.  Your have to tell them:  I have to advise you that the property by the river is contaminated with high levels of dioxin and that the MDEQ warns children should not play in soil or sediment that is known to contain elevated levels of dioxins.  Do you get the sale?  Is your property now worthless?  Think I am kidding, read this: MDA Food, farming gardening guidelines minimizing dioxin exposure (pdf)

Legal Activities/Punishment

bulletPrevent Dow Chemical from escaping responsibility for the cleanup
bulletPunitive damages against Dow for their concerted effort to manipulate and deceive the citizens of the Tittabawassee Flood plain for the past XX? years.  This deceit has resulted in many past, current and future health problems.  The loss of property use, and destruction of property values is of great concern.  People are afraid to go into their yards, visiting friends are afraid to drink the water, anti-anxiety pills are being prescribed, blood pressures are rising, people may have actually died because of this.   Most of property owners purchased land on the river for the peace and solitude it offers.  All this has been stolen from us.

Political

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Where are the elected officials on this issue? how come we never hear from them? I for one am tired of all this talk about cancer cures and breast cancer awareness..........dioxin is an endocrine disruptor, it screws up your hormones. Is it any wonder there are so many women with breast cancer living in the floodplain?...............where are the doctors? Do we even have a local health department. When I read about the wildlife study and all those contaminated fish and eggs I knew it was in all our bodies as well.........thanks dow is this another example of living better thru chemistry...........

bulletHold those in political & government positions accountable for their actions or inaction's in resolving this situation.
bulletHow can we trust our legislature to solve the problem when:
bulletDow has lobbyists everywhere in Washington and all states.
bulletDave Camp is married to a Dow attorney (Dow stock) and horrible environmental voting record.
bulletState senator, Bill Schutte (running for appeals judge) is a Dow heir. Belongs to Dow.
bulletTony Stamas, a local midland resident. Dow CEO had a fundraiser for Tony at his home.
Tony sat on community dioxin panel. Panel concluded that dioxin was no risk.
bulletAll of our local elected officials in Lansing and on the county board have been very lame in dealing with this issue.   Let them know how you feel!

State Agencies

MDEQ

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Dow Chemical

 
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Poor Dow could they whine anymore? I guess Dow didn't like what they heard so they try to take the emphasis off their pollution and focus on a few swear words. How transparent. I'll tell you what has no place in public discourse------- stonewalling, spinning and lying to the public. Ah yes, Dow Chemical the shining exmaple of ethics and responsibility. What a joke.  My hats off to TRW, Lone Tree Group  and every citizen who cared enough to defend their property, their health and the river. Dow clean it up!   (09/24/03

bulletDow-- Why do you keep saying you have begun corrective actions in the
cleanup of dioxin in the floodplain, when all you have done is put in
handwashing stations in parks that people are reluctant to use. In my
work, cleanup means REMOVING the contaminated residue. (09/04/03)
bulletDow, how many children and adults must suffer? How many politicians do
you have to buy to keep soothing your conscience. Profits above all
else, are you feeling omnipotent? (09/03/03)
bulletDow has always known where, when and how much dioxin was released into the surrounding area. They will never shut the plant down completely because they do not want to have to clean up the area. Why is a plant that size still operating with such a small workforce? Because they cannot give up any land without expunging all chemicals from the area, and they will not spend the money to do that. (Midland Daily News 08/12/03)
bulletDow grow the heck up, stop trying to harm the very same neighbors you claim you care about. Do the right thing! Your company did the damage, now it is time to fix it.  (Midland Daily News 07/16/03)
bullet Why should I have to fight so hard to make right what Dow has done wrong!

I look out my back window and down to the river. What a pretty sight it is! Then the reality hits me . IT'S CONTAMINATED with DIOXON. Does Dow care what they have done to my family and me? Do they care if the health issues we are dealing with are the fault of the Dioxons in our soil?

bulletYour are all to be commended for shooting down this sweetheart deal between DOW and DEQ. Taking on a corporate giant and a state government with nothing but contempt for the public is nothing short of admirable. Keep up the good work.
bulletNICE TO KNOW THAT THE POLLUTER IS CALLING THE SHOTS
From: Chemical Policy Alert October 28th 2002, Avery Palmer:
While admitting that DEQ could require Dow to clean up the dioxin at the state level of 90 ppt, Harding said “that would be a huge expense for them for what they think is not money well-spent.”
bulletGLAD TO SEE YOU RESIDENTS TAKING THIS INTO YOUR HANDS. DOW HAS MONEY TO BURN AND AN EXHAUSTIVE COVEN OF LAWYERS.   KNOW THEIR HISTORY WELL. VERY SAD THAT THERE IS NO PUBLIC  VOICE OUT THERE DEFENDING YOUR RIGHT TO BE HEARD AND TO LIVE SAFELY ON THE RIVER. POLITICIANS ARE USELESS, SPINELESS DON'T COUNT ON THEM TO HELP YOU OUT. MAYBE IF YOU GIVE THEM MONEY,LIKE DOW, THEY WILL LISTEN TO YOU. THIS DIOXIN IS NASTY STUFF. FIGHT FOR YOUR PROPERTY AND GOD GIVEN RIGHT TO LIVE ON A CLEAN RIVER.
I WILL PRAY FOR YOU EVERDAY.

 Miscellaneous

bulletThe Writer's Almanac for Friday, March 23, 2007

Listen
http://www.elabs7.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=fj6,2pxl,dv,hbok,b5qm,falz,ai0o

How to listen
http://www.elabs7.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=fj6,2pxl,dv,kld6,9t5k,falz,ai0o

Poem: "Saturdays" by Rosie King, from Sweetwater, Saltwater. Hummingbird Press.

Saturdays

A whiff of eggs and bacon,
my red plaid shirt with snaps, blue jeans that
zip up the side—I'm running downstairs,
my mother's laughing, still in her apron,
on her tiptoes for the picnic basket.
My father's calling from the basement stairs,
already pulling his high-tops on,
my brothers scrambling in the hall closet for theirs.
I grab my toast—strawberry jam—
We're going!
                      We're on the running board
into the velvety back of the old blue Chrysler,
past the putting greens, the cemetery, over
the Tittabawassee on its bumpy bridge,
to the straight gravel road by fields and woods, and on
to the turn at last—the new green sign
to our farm! Split rail fences, first apple trees,
past Shad and Mary's paint-peeled shack,
up the little hill by the root cellar
here's the farm bell on its post, the yellow-brick house,
the old red barns, the silvery silo—
forty acres, pine woods beyond—
the sweet dry smell of hay, the steamy
stench of manure, and now, for us, the white-plumed
whinnies of horses.
 

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