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Oral history interview with Sharon McCormick

  • 2013-Nov-08

Sharon McCormick grew up Northeast Philadelphia. Moving when her children were adolescent, she chose Ambler for its walkability, quaintness, and neighborhood feel. At that time she did not know about the asbestos dumps there. She increased her involvement when the Borough Council wanted to permit a high-rise on the BoRit Asbestos Area. She immersed herself in research about asbestos and the previous EPA remediation in Ambler. She encountered the frustration of dealing with a bureaucracy, but helped fund Citizens for a Better Ambler and the BoRit community advisory group. Other residents became educated and were also galvanized to demand more comprehensive containment and monitoring of the waste. McCormick was elected to the Borough of Ambler Council, informing people of health risks. She has been championing full removal of the asbestos factory and new technology to accomplish the task. McCormick's has taken pictures of the waste still extant and has compiled statistics of the area's deaths and illnesses due to asbestos. She fights repeatedly against the appellation "acceptable risk," which she insists does not mean "safe." Nevertheless, McCormick loves living in Ambler.

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