Health & Science
Master of Arts (MA)
This story is about a quest to find classmates from Camp Lejeune and put together a record of a school, where in the early 1980s the children drank and breathed heavily contaminated water and air. Not only were the children involved in what is widely accepted as the worst water contamination case in U.S history, they were there during the years when the levels of chemical contaminants peaked. The United States Marine Corps knew this at the time and did nothing to protect the children in its custody. While looking into the past contamination on Camp Lejeune, it was discovered that the Department of Defense had not learned their lesson because they were repeating the same mistakes to this day on bases both inside and outside the US.
It’s also a story about the real life consequences contamination on military bases has on families. The government tends to focus on the Marines and sailors and soldiers under its command, as does much of the media coverage. Some people are even dismissive about contamination on military bases. They say members of the military knew the risks when they signed up for service. But the families didn’t sign up for these risks. And the women and children who live on a bases now did not sign up to drink chemically contaminated water.
Pipe, Alana and Freshwater, Lori, "Poisoned By My Government: How the Military Let Families Drink Contaminated Water for Decades and Didn’t Learn From It" (2017). CUNY Academic Works.