The Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education (CSPECE) program helps ensure that child care centers are located in healthy environments.
Pennsylvania has a rich industrial history with
numerous properties that have been contaminated by past or current
industrial use. Some of these properties have been remediated, while
others remain as a possible source of environmental contamination to
child care centers. Environmental contaminants in or near a child care
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 child care centers to determine whether they
are near or on an area of contamination, and works to prevent harmful
We recommend child care owners and operators take this short CSPECE voluntary survey for their current child care center, or as soon as they have a location in mind.
The survey asks questions aimed at identifying environmental health hazards. After
completing the survey, the PA Department of Health (PA DOH) will use
your responses along with a database of known environmental
contamination sources to provide a consultation and certificate of
acknowledgment for your center. Since 2014 the PA DOH has been
partnering with the Office of Child Development and Early Learning
(OCDEL) in effort to ensure child care centers are safely sited.
For more information about the CSPECE Program for Pennsylvania:
CSPECE was established by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). To learn more, please visit
https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/safeplacesforece/csp_program.html. View an ATSDR infographic about CSPECE. Recently, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created an Early Care and Education (ECE) portal
dedicated to help ECE providers and health professionals find CDC and ATSDR resources related to ECE programs.
The portal can be found here:
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