chapter  2
Race, Class, and the Politics of Place
ByRobert D. Bullard
Pages 16

The General Accounting Office observed a strong relationship between the siting of offsite hazardous-waste landfills and race and socioeconomic status of surrounding communities. Unemployment and poverty were more pressing social problems for African Americans than any of the issues voiced by middle-class environmentalists. Many industrial firms, especially waste disposal companies and industries that have a long history of pollution violations, came to view the black community as a "pushover lacking community organization, environmental consciousness, and with strong and blind pro-business politics". Toxic-waste facilities are often located in communities that have high percentages of poor, elderly, young, and minority residents. The four hazardous-waste landfill sites included Chemical Waste Management, SCA Services, Industrial Chemical Company, and Warren County PCB landfill. The protest demonstrations in Warren County marked the first time anyone in the United States had been jailed trying to halt a toxic waste landfill.