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Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education Story Map

Children listening to a teacher read a book

Many young children spend a significant amount of time in early care and education (ECE) facilities, and in most states, licensing requirements of these facilities do not consider environmental exposures. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) created the Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education (CSPECE) program to help towns, cities, and states adopt practices that will make sure ECEs are located away from chemical hazards. ATSDR has released its first CSPECE Story Map. From 2017-2019, returning states worked on developing and piloting new interventions. This story map tracks and highlights the progress and successes of these unique programs, while providing a comprehensive summary of the CSPECE activities completed throughout the three years.

In 2017, ATSDR’s Partnership to Promote Local Efforts to Reduce Environmental Exposure (APPLETREE) Cooperative Agreement Program expanded its scope to protect the health of children where they learn and play. This led to incorporating CSPECE as a key activity in APPLETREE. ATSDR’s 28 APPLETREE states will use 2020-2023 fiscal year funding to build their capacity to evaluate and respond to environmental public health issues. Returning states will enhance or expand their programs to full- scale implementation and plan for long-term sustainability.

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