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PJ Media
PJ Media
2 Dec 2023
Rick Moran

NextImg:Chicago's Tent City to Sit On Land Polluted With Arsenic and Other Poisons

Chicago's illegal immigrant crisis is getting worse. Women and children are forced to sleep outside because there's no room in the shelters, police stations, or other temporary refuges the city is using.

A coalition of 17 churches volunteered to take some of the migrants but it's still not enough. So the city got funding from the state of Illinois to build a massive tent to hold 2,000 new arrivals until more permanent arrangements could be made for them.

A location of the tent city was found in Brighton Park and despite protests by nearby residents, construction is about to begin. Before doing so, an environmental impact statement must be filed as well as testing of the soil and air at the site.

What the scientists found was a little unsettling. Soil testing found mercury, arsenic, lead, manganese and a chemical used in PVC were found. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, "these contaminants were detected at levels that require cleanup to protect human health, according to a nearly 800-page report City Hall released late Friday evening."

Despite finding all the toxic matter, city officials said the most problematic levels of contamination were removed and declared the site “safe for temporary residential use.”

The privately owned industrial land at 38th and California is being leased by the city to shelter as many as 2,000 migrants.

The state, which is committing $65 million for the shelter and is directing the contractor building on the site, will have to sign off on the environmental report.

“The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency will have to review it,” said Jordan Abudayyeh, a spokeswoman for Gov. J.B. Pritzker. “We will not utilize that site if IEPA does not sign off.”

No family in their right mind would move their children to a site that would require toxic cleanup. But this is no longer a question of science. It's a question of politics; Chicago politics, to be precise. Governor J. B. Pritzker might take the expedient way out and have his EPA approve the proposed site. There may be no other suitable site with all the requirements needed by the city to house the illegals.

“We cannot represent that the site contains no hazardous substances, toxic material, petroleum products or other latent conditions beyond those identified during this evaluation,” the city consultant Terracon said in the report.

According to the Sun-Times, the site has hosted industrial companies for nearly 100 years, including a zinc smelter and an underground diesel fuel storage tank that was removed thirty years ago. There has never been any kind of monitored clean-up of the site by the state environmental agency.

To build the tent and other structures needed to run the shelter, tons of dirt are going to be dug up and turned over, exposing the soil to the air. Anyone breathing that air risks serious disease later in life with all the toxins they've already found in the soil.

I really can't see Pritzker signing off this site. This means that the illegals will have to stay in several different sites across the city, each of which will have protests from residents and aldermen. It's a nightmare scenario for Mayor Brandon Johnson who still thinks the "right wing" is responsible for the mess he's in.