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​​​​Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education: A Safe Siting Program

CSPECE




Pennsylvania’s Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education (CSPECE) program helps ensure that childcare facilities are located in healthy environments. Pennsylvania has a rich industrial history with numerous properties contaminated by past or current industrial use. Environmental contaminants in or near a childcare facility can increase the risk of health problems among staff as well as children, who are more sensitive to the effects of chemicals. CSPECE identifies and evaluates childcare facilities to determine whether they are near or on an area of contamination and works to prevent harmful exposures. Factors that are considered include the age of the facility building, drinking water source, former use of the facility, and other industrial activity located nearby.

Since 2014 the PA DOH has been partnering with the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) in an effort to ensure childcare centers are safely sited.

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We recommend childcare owners and operators take this short CSPECE voluntary survey for their current childcare facility, or as soon as they have a location in mind. The survey asks questions aimed at identifying environmental health hazards. CSPECE staff will then use survey responses along with a database of known environmental contamination sources to provide a consultation and certificate of acknowledgment for the participating facility. 

For more information about the CSPECE program:

Additional Resources for Child Care Providers

CSPECE was established by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). For more information, please contact us at email: choosesafeplaces@pa.gov, or call 717-787-3350.