Ray Elementary Students Garner Support for Chicago’s Styrofoam and Single-use Plastic Ban

Ray Elementary students have joined forces with Alderman. Scott Waguespack and Alderman Susan Sadlowski Garza to help drive support for the prohibition on single use plastic and Styrofoam containers in Chicago.Students attended the press conference held by the Illinois Environmental Council on January 15  to introduce the ordinance to the Committee on Finance.

Friends of Pilot Light may recall students taking a trip to City Hall in July 2019 to present the Styrofoam ban, along with former Governor, Pat Quinn. As part of their Pilot Light Food Advocacy Project, 6th grade science teacher Vicki Drewa and her students worked throughout the 2018-2019 school year doing research to develop a petition and wrote letters to gain support for their proposed ban on the use of polystyrene, a plastic that is widely used in restaurants as packaging materials such as containers, lids, trays, and disposable silverware.  This year-long Food Advocacy Project with Pilot Light addresses several Food Education Standards.

Students returned to City Hall this January, joining Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s Finance Committee Chairman Scott Waguespack (32nd), to express support for the “Plastic-Free Water” ordinance. Similar bans have gone into effect in cities like New York, Portland, Seattle, San Francisco and Minneapolis. Numerous organizations have signed on in their support of the ordinance including Illinois Environmental Council, Alliance for Great Lakes, Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, Chicago Recycling Coalition, Friends of the Chicago River and Illinois PIRG.

Stay tuned for more developments! 



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