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Toxic Bus Tours Are Just The Start Of Ongoing EJ Enforcement Task Forces

Once trust is established, government can find that EJ residents have lots of information about environmental and health problems.

S ince the Initiative’s inception, we have learned and demonstrated the effectiveness of community intelligence in predicting, identifying, stopping and cleaning up environmental damage in an expeditious manner.

The Initiative uses bus tours guided by EJ community members to visit multiple sites in each community where environmental hazards are suspected. This kind of communitybased predictive policing is complimented by a governmentimposed deadline to return to each community within 100 days to share information and report on enforcement activities after each tour. Subsequent to each 100day gettogether, government and community residents establish ongoing communitybased environmental task forces to maintain responsiveness, accountability, responsibility and transparency in addressing environmental hazards.

the concepts of communitybased predictive policing and prosecutions. This is a hybrid of widely accepted law enforcement methods that DTSC applies to environmental violations in order to solve ongoing environmental hazards and public health risks.

Through the Initiative, we now know there must be a nexus of community policing, prosecution and environmental justice to produce consistent and effective environmental

While the idea of “toxic bus tours” and workshops is not unique,14 the implementation, followup and transparency of DTSC’s Initiative is unprecedented in environmental enforcement. DTSC built the Initiative around

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14 For example, U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson used bus tours for “enforcement sweeps” when she was Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection from 2006 to 2008.

Worried parents in EJ communities often speak about their fears for their children’s health.


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