Tonawanda News

Local News

October 17, 2012

Clean Air rallies on

Activists hold event to protest extension of Tonawanda Coke permit


Tonawanda News — “I met a lot of people that are sick, and I can also smell it occasionally at my house,” he said. “We need to protect these people.”

Malec brought a photograph from the coalition’s exhibit that depicts the factory through a wire fence that surrounds the property.

“The wire fence does not protect the community from the factory,” the photo’s caption states.

Newberry also spoke at the rally and spoke to the many people she’s encountered who are sick as a result of the area’s pollution.

As part of her position at Clean Air, she goes to door-to-door to talk with residents.

She said she’s heard about residents who see plumes of smoke and have to shut their windows to keep the smell out — and parents who are worried about their kids growing up in that environment.

And Newberry said she can relate to residents’ worries.

“Two months ago, my mother was diagnosed with a very rare form of brain cancer. Nothing could have possibly prepared me for how it would affect our family,” she said. “It’s not fair. And it’s not fair that a corporation could come time to treat a community irresponsibly, and causing similar diseases. That’s why we are here today.”

Contact reporter Jessica Bagley at 693-1000, ext. 4150.

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