ESSEX COUNTY, NJ — The Junior League of the Oranges & Short Hills has united with Junior Leagues across New Jersey, including the Junior League of Montclair-Newark, to support the many residents of the city of Newark impacted by the current water crisis. As of August 2019, both the city of Newark and the Environmental Protection Agency acknowledged the residents of Newark are being exposed to a major health crisis. The EPA has determined that lead levels in the drinking water had risen to exceed 55 parts per billion, more than three times the federal action level, and is considered unsafe for human consumption. Lead is particularly harmful to children and pregnant women and is known to cause problems with cognition and behavior.
JLOSH, along with the seven other Junior Leagues in New Jersey, will raise money for a bulk purchase of bottled water for distribution later this month to impacted Newark residents.
“The city of Newark is a critical community within our service area,” Junior League of Montclair-Newark President Stephanie Hutton said. “But after learning more about the water crisis in Newark, and better understanding how many of our residents are without safe drinking water, we realized that our league should form strong partnerships to make the impact needed to support Newark residents. It is the Junior League way to find solutions that address real problems. Calling upon all New Jersey leagues to unite as one Junior League is a solution. Together we can be more powerful and together we can give the city of Newark additional access to bottled water for its many residents.”
“JLOSH is proud to stand with the Junior League of Montclair-Newark and support the many residents of Newark impacted by this water crisis,” JLOSH President Isabelle Felix said. “It is our responsibility as volunteers and as leaders within our communities to rally and support our fellow leagues when there are crises impacting our state. JLOSH is committed to working as one New Jersey Junior League so that as many Newark residents can have clean, bottled water until more permanent remedies and solutions can be realized.”